Ramsey County Files Lawsuit Against Companies That Installed Union Depot Escalators

November 02, 2018 07:04 PM

Ramsey County spent $2.5 million on escalators in the Union Depot in St. Paul. It's suing the companies that installed them, saying they're breaking down far too much.

"I've seen them down, there, a couple of times, not working," passenger Jade Metz said.

A lawsuit by Ramsey County Regional Railroad Authority against M.A Mortenson Company (Mortenson) and ThyssenKrupp Elevator Corporation (TKE) said the companies installed five escalators in Union Depot that are defective and improperly installed.


The complaint goes on to say the rate of failure has far exceeded industry standards for comparable escalators.

The suit also said the escalators would fall into a pattern of being repaired, then functioning again for a short while, and then they'd stop working again.

The lawsuit claims travelers at Union Depot suffer great inconvenience, and that trains have been delayed because the escalators haven't been working dozens of times, sometimes for extended periods of time, from 2012 through late September of this year.

The lawsuit also alleges the railroad authority suffers the expense and embarrassment of dealing with frequent escalator outages.

Now, Ramsey County wants Mortenson and TKE to replace the elevators and pay for it.

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In a statement to 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS, Mortenson said:

"Mortenson recently became aware of a lawsuit initiated by the Ramsey County Regional Railroad Authority regarding issues involving the installation, operation and maintenance of escalators by ThyssenKrupp Elevator Corporation at Union Depot in St. Paul. Mortenson takes the issues reflected in this lawsuit very seriously and we are committed at the highest level of our company to addressing it. As this is now a judicial matter, it would not be appropriate for Mortenson to comment further."

TKE said: "We were recently notified of Ramsey County Regional Railroad Authority's lawsuit against ThyssenKrupp Elevator. Per our corporate policy, we cannot comment on pending litigation."

Still, some passengers told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS the problem isn't that bad.

"It's not every single day that they're down. It's not every single moment," Joey Axdal of Cottage Grove said.

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Brandi Powell

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