Momentum undertook a study of lift use in the iconic HSBC headquarters building in Hong Kong. We used dynamic pedestrian modelling to assess the impact of proposed changes to the lift system to alleviate congestion in the lobbies during busy periods.

The Norman Foster-designed HSBC Building opened in 1985 and is recognised as one of the most iconic corporate headquarters in the world. The building accommodates more than 3,000 of the bank’s staff over 44 storeys accessed using an innovative lift system whereby lifts stop only at a small number of ‘transfer’ floors and floors are interconnected by escalators. However, over the years – as the requirements of a modern office have changed -the lift system has become suboptimal with congestion in the lobbies common in the peak periods.

Momentum was part of a team undertaking a study to determine the benefits of a series of proposed interventions, ranging from a rationalisation of lift allocation to the introduction of a ‘destination’ lift system. Using dynamic pedestrian modelling we were able to simulate the impact of the different interventions allowing the client to make informed decisions on the best option.