Elevator installation closes corner of Market and Main Streets

Published 9:29 am Monday, February 27, 2023

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...
Wondering what’s happening downtown?
The corner of Main and Market Streets are closed, because an elevator is being installed in the West Main lofts, this morning. Two large cranes are being used in the installation. The corner will be blocked most of the day, but detour signs will be in place, according to the City of Washington.
As of 9 a.m., Edwards Inc. is preparing for the installation.
“Good news! It fits,” exclaimed Jonathan Fox, president of Resolute Elevators as an elevator descended into the roof of what will be The West Main vacation rentals. The elevator installation on Monday, Feb. 27 drew a crowd of onlookers who watched a large crane slowly guide an elevator through the roof of the West Main building and down into a newly constructed elevator shaft. The elevator will take guests up and down three stories.
It was manufactured by Resolute Elevator in Burlington, North Carolina. Lowering the elevator through the roof is better for a historic building like West Main, because there is not a preexisting concrete shaft, Allen explained. Using this innovative approach, the shaft is manufactured off site then attaches to a structure constructed inside a building. It’s difficult to build a concrete elevator shaft in a preexisting building, Allen said. The cabin, mechanical and electrical work is also done mostly off site so that by the end of installation day, the building will have a fully operational elevator. This new approach to installing elevators is more efficient than the traditional way.
Fox said a traditional elevator installation could take weeks or months to complete, but Resolute Elevators has shortened the time to a mere 15 to 20 minutes. Building the shaft and cabin at their facility makes it easier to control and streamline the process, he said.
On Monday, the installation began around 7:30 a.m. The elevator was inside West Main by noon. The entire process is expected to be complete by the end of the day.
Allen and his fiancee, Katherine Moravec are looking forward to opening The West Main this summer. The plumbing, electrical, HVAC, sprinkler – and now elevator – have been installed. The next stage will include an inspection then putting up drywall and installation. Finally, the fun part is next – trim and decorations. The West Main will have four studio rooms and two rooms with a private bedroom. All of the rooms will have a galley kitchen.
“We think there is a large enough demand of tourism and shortage of consistent rooms that once the other hotels are built and the addition of our rooms people can really have a wedding where 20 or 30 people can come and stay whereas right now they have to piece it all together,” Allen said. Moravec added that it’s “great” to have full-size hotels in town, but walkability to shops and restaurants in town is nice, too.