Taking elevator design to the next level.

I’m convinced I can’t be the only one who sees this as a problem and it is one that is so incredibly simple to sort out. Amazingly, it’s been troubling us for years and years, and yet no one has worked to come up with a better design.  How can that be?


We have all been in a lift waiting patiently for take-off when an exasperated potential passenger approaches the doors.  They look at the other passengers pleadingly.  And then you look down at the operating panel because you’re the driver, being located closest to the panel.  And your eyes kind of wobble around looking for the Open button – but you’re under pressure because potential passenger (PP) is wondering if they’re going to get stuck, so your search becomes frantic.   And even though PP knows that it’s illogical to believe that they will be crushed by the doors, we’ve all experienced that uncomfortable squeeze from the lift doors until the sensors finally that you are wedged between them.


Then you finally work out which button has the arrows pointing out.  But hang on, does that mean open out or close in?  By this time, seconds have been wasted, and the doors close on the exasperated PP.  You are left feeling like a heel for not having got them in, and they’re looking back at you like it was deliberate.  But it wasn’t, was it?


Surely there are better options.  It’s pleasing to see that braille has been adopted on lift buttons but for people of regular sight, How about Green for open and Red for close?  I suppose the green could be construed as “ready to go” which would mean closed.  So how about just an O and a C? I am just bewildered as to why we have made it so very difficult.


Design experience isn’t easy, and it does take time to understand the meaning behind our ideas.   Making the right choices and making the choices that make sense to customers IS time well spent.


Do you have a design problem?  I’m happy to help.



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