Work at convention center underway

Published 8:11 pm Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Work on the escalators and elevator at the Vicksburg Convention Center are underway and expected to be completed in March, convention center executive director Annette Kirklin said.

The work is being done by Schindler Elevator Corp. of Morristown, New Jersey, which submitted an $892,500 bid to renovate the escalators and elevator at the convention center.

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“They started (working on the escalators) right before Dec. 8,” she said. “They boxed them off and they started right before Breakfast with Santa. They are about one-third finished with one.

“They cleaned it up, removed everything old and now they’re installing the new parts. When they’re finished, they’ll clean it up, get it ready to start using, and then they’ll start on the other one.”

Each escalator takes about 6-8 weeks to fix, she said, adding the contractor “is really on time with that.”

Kirklin said the contractor was expected to work on the elevator first, but serious problems with one of the escalators caused a change in plans.

While repairs to one of the escalators are underway, she said, the other is operating.

“What happens when we have an event, everybody will go down that escalator as they arrive, and at a certain time we’ll have that escalator go back up,” Kirklin said. “We normally wouldn’t do that, but we’re doing that because it’s needed for access as far as upstairs and downstairs.”

“We had a wedding reception this weekend, and when all the guest were getting here they went down and then at 9 o’clock, we had it go up.”

If anyone has to leave early from an event, she said, the elevator is available.

“The elevator works fine,” said.

Elevators next

She said work on the elevator begins once the escalators are repaired. Its inner cab will be improved; it will be brought up to state code and will be faster. During work on the elevator, people needing elevator service will be able to use the convention center’s freight elevator.

Once the escalators are completed, Kirklin said, the elevator work is estimated to take 2-3 weeks.

“We are doing everything we can so as not to have any event impacted at all,” she said. “Each client we’ve had since this project began has not said anything about the escalator, because we have made it to where it is not a dent in their event at all. We’ve made it so there’s not even a difference.”

About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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