Category "Commercial Accessibility"


Commercial lifts: The benefits of increased accessibility

by Andrew @ Uppercut

If your commercial building has multiple floors, it has become less and less acceptable to have areas that are not accessible to all individuals, regardless of their mobility. As specialists in accessibility lifts for Calgary and Edmonton, we know the significant difference a commercial lift can make for a business. Commercial wheelchair lifts are one of the safest devices you can use to make commercial spaces inclusive. Besides transporting people to and from different floors of the building, commercial wheelchair lifts provide the following benefits.

1. Creates a reputation of inclusivity

By providing accessibility options for people of all abilities, businesses demonstrate a culture of inclusivity. Everyone is welcome. A wheelchair lift in Calgary gives customers and employees with mobility challenges the ability to have their freedom and independence back. They can comfortably and safely access all areas of the building to make appointments, shop, and complete errands. Having an accessibility lift can make or break people’s decisions on whether they want to do business with you, including major clients and potential investors.

2. Improves the functionality of the building

Depending on the nature of the business, the everyday operations of a commercial building can be quite busy. Customers walking in and out, team members accessing different areas of the building, service technicians doing maintenance and repairs, and carriers delivering packages. While the priority use is for individuals with limited mobility, some commercial lifts add functionality to the building for transporting equipment or deliveries to the upper levels. This improves the safety of the building and reduces the risk of injuries, falls, and accidents.

3. Enhances the safety of the building

Commercial lifts must meet the B355 accessibility requirements, including call station (size and height), entry/exit configurations, minimum platform or cab sizes, and more. The fact that these accessibility lifts are inspected ensures the safety of those who access the building and use the lift. Businesses that are code compliant and install a quality lift are responsible, forward-thinking, and care about their customers, employees, and patrons who use the building.

Contact us for a free consultation!

Check out our recent blog on the 3 ways your business can benefit from Commercial accessibility lifts.


3 ways your business can benefit from a commercial accessibility lift

by Andrew @ Uppercut

Commercial accessibility lifts can improve the functionality of your business, whether it’s catering to people of all abilities or used as transportation of goods between floors. If you’re considering a commercial lift for your business, we’ve written an article specifying the different types of commercial lifts that may help you in your research.

There are many reasons why a commercial lift is a great investment and it’s easy to see how one can enhance a commercial building. Keep reading to learn more about the ways businesses can benefit from having a commercial lift in their facility.

1. Improves accessibility

All businesses have a duty to ensure that all employees and visitors’ needs are met, including comfortable and safe access throughout the building. Depending on the nature of your business, consider visitors with limited mobility, families with strollers, or patrons delivering goods between floors.

Commercial accessibility lifts help guests and employees feel more comfortable, maintain independence, and move comfortably throughout the facility. Furthermore, buildings with accessibility lifts demonstrate responsibility to serve all individuals of all abilities.

2. Enhances safety

Safety should always be the first priority when choosing a lift for your commercial building. Installing a lift prevents injuries, workplace-related accidents, and provides a safer facility for all individuals who use the building.

Commercial accessibility lifts can be fitted with important safety features, including emergency call buttons, automatic sensors, and manual power systems. Commercial lifts must also meet legal safety and fire requirements.

3. Adapts to business needs

As a provider of commercial accessibility lifts for Calgary, Edmonton, and surrounding areas, we understand that every business has unique needs. Different commercial facilities require different features, designs, and styles that match the aesthetics of the business. Whether it’s an open lift or enclosed structure, our lifts can be incorporated into the design of any building or retrofitted into an existing structure, including curved stairways.

Some commercial lifts can be customized with optional features such as fire-rated doors, sliding elevator doors, an upper landing gate, emergency call buttons, and more. With continued innovation and improved technology, we can help you find a solution for your specific facility.


Types of wheelchair accessible commercial lifts

by Andrew @ Uppercut

Commercial lifts are a cost-effective way to make any public space wheelchair accessible. These wheelchair accessibility lifts are built to the highest standard for public safety and are required to meet the Lifts for Persons with Physical Disabilities Code (B-355). All commercial lifts in Alberta are inspected under this code. There are however restrictions on how these devices may operate so it is important to understand the B-355 code

commercial lifts

These wheelchair accessibility lifts can be planned for during the design phase or incorporated into an existing building as a renovation. There is a multitude of commercial lifts available, but the type of lift will depend on the specific application. The following is a description of each type of commercial accessibility lift

Inclined platform lifts

These commercial lifts are great when space is at a premium. They fit in the stairway and require a minimal amount of construction. They offer a variety of platform sizes to accommodate a wheelchair and fold up out of the way when not in use. Garaventa Lift is a leading manufacturer of inclined platform commercial lifts and produces two products. The Xpress II for straight stairways and the Artira for curving staircases.

Unenclosed vertical platform lifts

unnamed 1This code compliant device is sometimes referred to as a commercial porch lift and is ideal for access to stages storefronts or locations where the rise is under 2500mm of travel. As the name indicates these commercial lifts are unenclosed and do not have a hoistway or shaft constructed around them. An example of this type of lift would be the RAM TTL or TrusT Lift

Enclosed vertical platform lifts

You would use an enclosed vertical platform lift in a situation where you wanted to convey an experience closer to an elevator rather than a commercial lift. This product can accommodate rises of up to 7000mm and therefore requires a structure or hoistway constructed around it. The lift itself has full-height walls and a ceiling with lights. A product like the Garaventa Genesis enclosure model can be provided with its own enclosure but is limited to about 4900mm travel while devices such as the RAM CTL can travel the full 7000mm


Commercial lifts for public applications

by Andrew @ Uppercut

Commercial lifts for public applications

Commercial lifts, or vertical platform lifts, can help make a space accessible for those individuals with limited mobility. Wheelchair access is no longer considered an option; in many jurisdictions, it’s the law.

A wheelchair lift installed in a public space creates a welcoming environment that allows everyone the ability to travel freely throughout the building. In new construction, a wheelchair lift can be incorporated into your barrier-free design. This eliminates the need for long ramps that can eat up valuable space.

Commercial lifts can also be retrofitted into existing buildings providing that space allows for it.

Unenclosed commercial lift 1

The code they are inspected under

The code under which commercial lifts are installed is referred to as the B-355 code or; Lifts for Persons with Physical Disabilities (LPPD).  This code ensures that each accessibility lift installed in Alberta is safe and easy to use. It also details the limitations under how these lifts may be used.


A commercial lift:

  • Must not have a total travel of more than 7 meters (23’)
  • Must operate under constant pressure
  • May not have a platform larger than 21 square feet



The Process of Getting your Commercial Lift Certified.

A commercial lift requires a professional installation and ultimately will be inspected by AEDARSA (Alberta Elevating Devices & Amusement Rides Safety Association). In order to receive a Certificate of Operation your commercial lift supplier will have to implement the following steps:

  1. Provide engineer stamped lift drawings (verifying that the commercial lift meets the B-355 code)
  2. Register the accessibility lift with AEDARSA by providing the owner/ agent information
  3. Receive the certificate of construction from AEDARSA, stating that this commercial lift may be installed
  4. Install the lift as per the current code of the day
  5. Have the lift inspected by AEDARSA
  6. If any directives are present, address them and forward the report to AEDARSA

After these steps are completed your commercial accessibility lift will receive its certificate of operation and can now be used by the public.


Commercial Accessibility Lift

Types of commercial lifts

Commercial lifts can either be unenclosed or enclosed by design. An unenclosed vertical platform lift can be utilized for applications where the travel is less than 2500mm (98.4 inches). These are often referred to as commercial porch lifts and are commonly installed on the exterior of public buildings. They have no structure build around them (other than one support wall) and the lift platform has no roof on it.

If You Need A Longer Lift

Distances beyond 2500mm require a complete hoistway or shaft to be constructed around the lift. If the lift goes through the floor an enclosed lift will also be required. This hoistway can be built using 2×6 construction, structural steel or concrete block.

A fire separation in the building may also be the determining factor as to if you require an enclosed or unenclosed commercial lift.

The hoistway should always be constructed using site-specific drawings. These drawings will detail blocking locations, rough opening for doors, and the structural requirements for your commercial lift.


More information on commercial lifts can be found on our commercial accessibility lift page


Your Experienced Elevator and Lift Supplier

by Andrew @ Uppercut
  • Residential Elevator Services

In my twenty years of experience in the elevator and lift industry, I have seen many companies come and go.

I have seen countless failed products hit the market and unfortunately, I have seen numerous clients hand over their money and not have their expectations met.
When making a big ticket purchase such as an elevator or a lift it is important for potential clients to do their homework. Clients should look past flashy marketing material and ask hard hitting questions of their sales person.  The following is a list of questions that we believe your Elevator or lift supplier should have no issues answering.

  • How long has the distributer been in business; will they be around years from now should you need support?
  • How long has the product they represent been manufactured; will parts be available in the future?
  • Are there multiple  installations available for viewing?
  • Do they conduct their own installations or is this outsourced?
  • Do they make over the top claims such as offering warranty periods that far exceed their experience in the trade?
  • Can they provide testimonials  from real people who have had their product installed past the warranty period?
  • Who services the product if there is an issue, and can they be reached after regular business hours?

As I stated, my experience spans 20 years and I have been at the helm of Uppercut since 2013. The home elevator and commercial accessibility lift products we represent – RAM, Bruno, and Wessex – have all been manufactured for well over 25 years. We have many satisfied clients throughout the province who are happy to share their experience with you.

We do not outsource our installations or service work, and are available when you need us. 9:00 am to 5:00pm doesn’t cut it in our business. Uppercut Elevators and our suppliers have stood the test of time and have a proven track record for providing exceptional customer service throughout the province of Alberta. Our products can be found in every major center including: Calgary, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Red Deer, Edmonton, Grande Prairie and Fort McMurray. Our installations include not only private homes, but places of worship, community centers, schools, retail spaces, office and professional buildings.

Call or e-mail us today and ask about our client testimonials.

After all the proof is in the pudding; if your elevator and lift supplier can’t show you a happy customer, how do you know one exists?


Custom Built Accessibility Lifts

by Andrew @ Uppercut

While the primary purpose of an custom built accessibility lifts should be to provide reliable wheelchair access, this doesn’t necessarily mean the device needs to look like a piece of medical equipment. We recently completed a project for a client that required secondary wheelchair access up to the 3rd floor of an office building. There are a variety of products that would satisfy this need but this client had some very specific criteria. Due to the fact the accessibility lift needed to be located in an atrium full of glass and plants it was important to preserve the look of the space. The client required:

  1. A pit-less application – they wanted to avoided cutting up the existing concrete
  2. No machine room – the available space did not allow for this
  3. A full height car complete with a ceiling – they wanted to duplicate the feel of a regular passenger elevator
  4. Travel speed of 37′ per minute (maximum allowable by code) – The lift needed to travel over 23′
  5. Bi-folding doors – so that they did not swing into the hallway at the second and 3rd levels
  6. An aesthetically pleasing hoistway and lift – It needed to look like it belonged in the space



The first 5 points could be easily achieved by using the RAM CTL (commercial traction lift), as this would all be included in the standard product offering. To achieve the desired look we needed to get creative so we did the following custom work:

  • Had Greywolf projects build a custom glass and wood hoistway finished as per the clients specifications
  • Added a glass wall to the elevator car
  • Provided stainless steel doors at the landing entrances
  • Upgraded the lift with  stainless steel trim inside the elevator car
  • Clad the lift wall panels with a custom laminate
Custom Hoistway under construction Accessibility Lift installation starts Wheelchair lift well underway Custom built lift ready for inspection Bi folding stainless steel door Accessibility lift interior View from glass panel exterior of lift Glass accessibility lift Lift car interior Glass and stainless steel door

More information on Commercial Accessibility Lifts can be found here or you can contact us  at our Calgary or Edmonton offices.





Portable Wheelchair lift

by Andrew @ Uppercut
Commercial Accessibility

Portable Wheelchair lift

We recently delivered a portable wheelchair lift to the Air Force Museum Society of Alberta. This product was the perfect solution as they had several locations which required temporary wheelchair lift access. This portable wheelchair lift easily rolls to each display and allows everyone to view all the amazing  features of the museum .

Portable TrusT Lift Portable 3 Portable 2 Portable 5 Portable 1 blueprint

The RAM portable wheelchair lift is utilized when necessary, then stored away until another accessibility need arises. This was a far more cost effective solution than installing a stationary lift at each display. It also gives the museum the flexibility to move or add new attractions at a later date.

This wheelchair accessibility  lift is not intended to replace a permanent lift, and must be stored away from the place of access when not in use. The Portable Trus-T-Lift™ in not required to be inspected by AEDARSA (Alberta Elevating Devices  Amusement Rides Safety Association) due to its portable and temporary nature. Please note that portable wheelchair lifts are not intended to replace  or alleviate the need for a permanent installation. Chances are if you are required by code to make a space accessible you will need to go the permanent lift route.

The small footprint allows for easy storage and manoeuvrability . The dimensions can be viewed at the following Portable lift sample drawing.

If you require more information on permanent or portable accessibility lifts please visit the page here


Elevator and Lift Servicing for Calgary, Edmonton and all of Alberta

by Andrew @ Uppercut

At Uppercut Elevators and Lifts, we take pride in servicing everything we sell. We believe the relationships we develop with our clients is ongoing, and shouldn’t end after the salesperson gets your name on the contract. We stand behind our products and won’t give you the run around when you need your elevator or lift servicing or repairing. We work in both a commercial and residential environment and are dedicated to getting your device up and running as soon as possible.

20160224_114223At Uppercut Elevators and Lifts  we:

  • Use experienced factory trained technicians
  • Have offices and staff in both Edmonton and Calgary
  • Sell elevators  manufactured in Alberta, so parts are readily available and delivered quickly
  • Offer 24 hour Emergency service
  • Specialize in RAM and Bruno products.  We don’t try to be all thing to all people , and believe you do one thing and do it right!
  • Focus on dealing with residential elevators/lifts and commercial accessibility lifts

When you consider purchasing an elevator or accessibility lift  make sure you  ask about your providers’ after sales service. Enquire as to where their devices come from, and typically how long it takes to get a part. Ask if they offer after hours service, and find out what their core business is.

If your home elevator or wheelchair lift needs service please don’t hesitate to contact us anytime.


Uppercut adds another wheelchair accessibility lift to a public building

by Andrew @ Uppercut
Commercial Accessibility News and Such

We recently completed an installation at the Prairie Moon Inn and Suites located in Consort Alberta. The contractor was looking at retrofitting a wheelchair accessibility lift into the existing building. We had limited space so there was no excess square footage available for a machine room, nor did the contractor want to chip away the concrete slab to create a pit. The end user needed a durable drive mechanism that could handle lots of use, as it would be the only elevating device in the hotel.

MainConsort001 IMG 0196 2 IMG 0194 2 IMG 0197 2 MainConsort002 IMG 0200 2 Crystal Elevator
Fortunately we had the ideal product for this situation. We utilized the RAM CTL, which requires no machine room or pit. The secret to this wheelchair accessibility lift is its  compact traction counter weight drive, that fits right in the hoist-way. This system has passed the test of time and is 50% more energy efficient than comparable hydraulic wheelchair lifts. We were able to provide a lift platform of close to 21 square feet, and a 1000lb capacity, so guests would feel comfortable when riding in this lift. The interior car finish featured raised car panels (standard offering) with a stainless steel  reveal.


For more information on commercial accessibility lifts please contact us at either our Calgary or Edmonton offices