After reviewing the data, we have found that we met our hypothesis that the escalators were being used less than 50% of the time at the Valley River Center Mall. The only day that the escalators exceeded the 50% benchmark was on Saturday, March 10th, 2007 by 2.4% on the up escalator and 3.8% on the down escalator. However, every other day that was tested proved to be less than our target number though the data correlates with the idea that more people visit the mall on weekends. This analysis leads to the conclusion that the escalator is not properly designed for the space and wastes energy when not in use.           

We feel that we took enough data to be fairly certain of our assertions however, we could become even more certain with a multi week analysis, and we would also like to compare occupancy from season to season. Further analysis could be made to explore peak shopping times, such as the after Thanksgiving sale, or when the Regal Cinemas has been in business for awhile.

Through the course of this case study and as part of our research, it was our goal to identify alternate conventional or green escalator strategies to apply to retail locations. We were pleasantly surprised that one company provides an alternate energy-conscious motor known as the Power Genius Motor. However, information concerning the retrofit of conventional models with the Power Genius Motor was not provided on the website.

For future studies, we would suggest that comparing escalators to elevators use at a common facility, escalators use at other locations like the airport, and escalator use with adjacent stairs.

If we were to redesign the space we would suggest that businesses with shorter hours be located on the mezzanine level so that the escalator could be discontinued during non business hours. Ideally every business would be located on one level or that more businesses would be located on the mezzanine floor so that the escalators would be used more. Another possible design solution is to replace the escalators with stairs and an elevator, making circulation up to the mezzanine level user controlled.

Observations and Sources of Error