Elevators and the Fifth Floor

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31 replies [Last post]
ShiinWindragon's picture
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I'll go ahead and start by saying, I know this is a problem that isn't the fault of Anthrocon staff and security and is meerly something I observed and wanted to bring up.

I don't know if I got really lucky last year and never experienced this, and then got super unlucky this year and got it every elevator ride, but the amount of people getting on the elevators on the fifth floor of The Westin was astounding.

It would seem that I would wait in line, as normal, and get on an elevator, only to go up a few floors and stop on the fifth floor. There, a group of people would always force their way on, despite the protests of the people from an already cramped elevator. I've often heard people whispering about going up to the fifth floor to avoid the lines, and even heard people stating openly that they weren't going to wait in line and instead would just go up a few flight of stairs and get right on the elevator on the fifth floor.

Again, I'm not sure if I got lucky last year and never experienced this, but it was a huge issue this year. I'm sure there's really almost nothing that can be done about it, but I just wanted to bring it up and wondered if anyone else had this experience as well, or if I just got majorly unlucky. I used the elevator numerous times a day, and can only recall one or two times where this didn't happen.

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MiltoniusPrime's picture
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That sounds terrible.  I had to dole out some stern talkings to people complaining about the Dorsai being "mean" in their elevator-guarding.  I'd take "mean" any day over broken elevators.

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Xydexx's picture
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An interesting data point: Anthrocon's attendance has more than doubled since we were in the Adam's Mark in 2004. That means more than half the people attending Anthrocon have no experience with what the elevators were like back then, and thus no understanding why we have the Dorsai managing the elevators. People complain about the elevator lines, but they have no idea how much worse it could be.

There are always going to be elevator lines at the convention. It's a simple fact of the elevators only being able to handle a finite number of people. The number one thing that our attendees can do to make things better is to be patient. 

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MiltoniusPrime's picture
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Attempting to get into one of the first-to-third floor elevators, and being greeted with a pitch-black cab that isn't quite at the level of the floor is not a good con experience.  Dorsai = less of those.

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Tyrrlin's picture
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I've had that experience (one year my room was on the 5th floor RIGHT NEXT to the elevators) when I used to stay in the Westin.  I basically was unable to sleep for the duration of the con due to this issue, and the noise said people made while waiting for an elevator to cram into. 

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That is why I never want to stay in the westin myself

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astro_wanabe's picture
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I wasn't even staying in the Westin and overheard this being discussed several times just as I was passing through.

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Pamiiruq's picture
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I heard this happening as well.

 

You can't block the stairwells due to safety reasons so I don't know if there's anything that the staff can really do.

 

I've also heard and saw lots of people getting on elevators to go up one floor, or down a few floors. I was on the fifteenth floor and was perfectly fine with going down the stairs to the first floor if needed (it happened once when the elevators broke down on Friday night). I also went up the stairs to the fifteenth floor one time, which I wouldn't recommend. But up a few floors that way is very doable for most con-goers.

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mwalimu's picture
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I don't suppose it would be possible to disable the 'up' buttons on the fifth floor? (and perhaps the sixth as well)

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charlieg's picture
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You suppose correctly, unfortunately.  There's also the remote possibility that a disabled fur (wheelchair) could visit the fifth floor and be forced to go to the ground floor to get to their room.  That may not be a noteworthy problem, though.  The Dorsai  would probably move such a person to the front of the elevator line.

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As a staffie on the fifth floor, who had some equipment on the 19th floor that I frequently needed to snag before heading back down, I really am not a fan of this idea. Eye-wink

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Kiric's picture
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We have a few helpful plackards on the 3rd floor reminding folks that they need to catch the tower elevators on the ground floor. Perhaps something similiar could be placed at the 5th floor elevator area? Maybe slightly different wording since some of us do wind up staying on the 5th. Perhaps something like:

"If you just came up the stairs for the sole purpose of catching the elevator here, please consider continuing on foot or going back downstairs to wait in line. Your inconsiderate moment may ruin the elevators for the rest of us. Thanks."

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Myr
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Sounds like it's time for some "elevator marshals" to randomly go for rides. Might be worthwhile to have con security randomly tag along when the likelihood of floor 5 interlopers is high! The threat of random elevator policing combined with clear punishment terms may help alleviate this problem before it gets worse.

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Eric's picture
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As long as we are talking about people generated problems with elevators, there are still quite a few people who go up to go down which sometimes made it difficult for those of us on the higher floors (really?  this is the 21st floor and the elevator going down is full?) to get an elevator going down that wasn't full.

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Witchiebunny's picture
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Actually there is a bit more to it than that. 

I was on the 8th floor and from Saturday on had mobility issues such that taking the stairs would have been painful and would have exacerbated my condition significantly. There were a couple of times I had to go up to go downstairs when I needed to, as being so (relatively) low made it difficult for me to get an elevator as by the time the elevator reached my floor, it was full.

The second is that while heading up to my floor we had an interesting circumstance where our floor was lit up on the button panel but the elevator passed my floor entirely, leaving my roommate and I looking at each other in bemusement as we rocketed up to the 21st floor and then had to ride the elevator back down to where we were trying to get to in the first place. For the record, in this instance we got on at the bottom on an elevator monitored by the Dorsai, and had no one get on after the fact until the 21st floor but had people getting off.

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Eric's picture
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Perhaps, but I do get miffed when I see people on the 21st floor get on an up-going elevator and then I see them again when the elevator comes back down to the 21st floor, and over the course of the con I saw this many times.

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MiltoniusPrime's picture
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Some people just don't appreciate/practice courtesy.  If there's no punishment for doing it, why stop?

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jamesthedog's picture
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Yes, I was on the 7th floor and had that issue too. Getting on one that was going up to go back down was pretty much the only way to do it at some of the busier times- like before the fursuit parade, and before check out on Monday morning (both of which were times I couldn't easily use the stairs, due to suiting and luggage).

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PhantomWolf's picture
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One of the unwritten rules at conventions especially at large ones like anthrocon is sometimes you have to get in an elevator that is going up in order to go down otherwise you end up waiting twice as long to find an elevator that isnt full and it going down which might make you miss an event you've been waiting to see or your favorite pannel. You can't punish other's for seizing an opportunity but i will agree that using one of the lower level elevators to avoid waiting in the lobby line should have consequences especially since it may be forcing an overheating suiter to wait longer because someone couldnt be patient

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CCritt93's picture
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One of the unwritten rules at conventions especially at large ones like anthrocon is sometimes you have to get in an elevator that is going up in order to go down

The elevator equivalent of a Michigan left.

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Myr
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I suppose that means going up to the 5th floor is equivalent to the Pittsburgh Left.  :) 

This whole thread is the biggest reason why I would never stay at the Westin, period.

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bigsiouxwolf's picture
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3-odxms90ts&feature=youtu.be&t=1h7m40s

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Heck, I was hoofing it up to the 8th floor till they moved us upto 24 cause our room lock was on the fritz... I would hardly bother hopping on one if I was going down.  i'll admit, I went up to the 7th or 8th floor to catch the elevator going up. I figured at least by then a few folks might have hopped off on their floor.  I can't really see an issue with this, as on the 5th floor hardly anyone has left the elevators since the 1st floor and further more if people have gotten out of the elevator, there is now room for more people...  A little paitence goes a long way... Its not like you can't spare that 15 second stop on your way up!

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whtllnew's picture
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[a little patience goes a long way]

...Yet it was too much to ask that you wait in the elevator line with everyone else?

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Lyris's picture
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instead of hopping 7-8 floors on the stairs to get to my room or into an elevator that has let people out? Ima go out on a limb here and suggest that what I was doing was actually saving people like yourself waiting time in the elevator line. Could be wrong though  Eye-wink

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whtllnew's picture
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You're missing a couple points here. 

A) You're cutting in front of us.  We're supposed to like you for that? 

B)  You cant count on folks having got out by the 8th floor, which means

C) you're risking overloading the elevator by doing this.

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Lyris's picture
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A) that would be incorrect. I was meerly more willing to put some energy and effort into filling spots that would otherwise stay vacant. This not only kept the line on the 1st floor shorter for you but also kept the elevator from carrying fewer people to the upper floors. 

B) I never did. If an elevator was "too full" I let it pass. If people were like "cmon get in!" I did!

C) elevators won't stop to pick up more folks if the weight capacity has been reached.

D) it's cool if you want to disagree, but honestly, it would be better for everyone if more folks took the stairs at least some of the way.

 

 

I'll leave it at that.  Smiling

 

 

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mwalimu's picture
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Maybe putting two and two together with these two quotes

Witchiebunny wrote:
The second is that while heading up to my floor we had an interesting circumstance where our floor was lit up on the button panel but the elevator passed my floor entirely, leaving my roommate and I looking at each other in bemusement as we rocketed up to the 21st floor
Lyris wrote:
C) elevators won't stop to pick up more folks if the weight capacity has been reached.
Could it be that what happened here is that the latter behavior overrides the buttons in the elevator? In other words, elevator is full. Someone on the elevator presses 8. Someone on the 8th floor presses the 'up' button. In this scenario, would the elevator's weight capacity limit cause it to not stop on 8 for the 'up' button, even though someone on the elevator pressed the 8 button to get off?

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charlieg's picture
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Logic suggests the opposite.  If the floor button in the elevator is pressed, it should have priority.  The system should "know" that the button indicates someone wants to get off there, which would lower the weight load.

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Myr
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It is actually possible for a button pressed in the cab and a button pressed on another floor to cancel each other out. You could flip the stop bit so to speak. It's a type of shared resource contention when the elevator combines cab commands with floor commands. If you're going up to 8 and someone presses the up button on 8 then the elevator could set the stop bit and then remove it because the two commands toggled the same stop bit. There were some Otis elevators that had this exact problem in the early 2000's. They were all fixed by Otis. The fix was to force the stop to be true instead of just toggling it. I don't recall seeing any company names proudly displayed in the Westin elevators or on their escalators. I assume they went with some company that doesn't stand behind their products as strongly.

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Lyris's picture
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Puzzled  I really have no idea there.

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Witchiebunny's picture
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I thought about that as we were on it, actually! But the elevator wasn't really that full, there were maybe five people in it because it was late at night, circa 2 am. If that counts as full, then I worry about the on peak times and how full those elevators get!

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