“Lift” is such a sensible way to say “elevator,” if only because it has three fewer syllables, but I have never encountered it in the U.S., maybe because it is such a quintessential Britishism.

Never encountered it until now, that is. Here’s what I saw on the lower level of the Chelsea Market in New York City:


Was “lift” used here merely because “elevator” wouldn’t fit? Or is this the harbinger of a “lift” incursion on U.S. shores? Only time will tell.

7 thoughts on ““Lift”

  1. Concourse fits so elevator will too, OK it will be a lot smaller. It would be interesting to find out why Lift was chosen. I love the arrow underscore broken for the ‘f’.

  2. Not entirely sure what it means by “concourse”. Dictionary definition is:

    1 A large open area inside or in front of a public building. ‘a station concourse’

    2 formal, A crowd or assembly of people. ‘a vast concourse of onlookers’

    I remember Chelsea market as being a crowded area of shops with no large open areas (but I did love it). The second definition is not relevant in the context of lift signage.

    1. In a large railway station, It’s the open area inside before you get to the platform barriers. I’ve never heard of it in connection with a market.

    2. Right, I’m not sure if “concourse” is the right word. The main floor of the market (to which the sign refers) is basically a long and fairly spacious corridor running from the 10th Avenue entrance to the 9th avenue entrance, with shops, food stands and restaurants on either side.

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