HYPRLIFT represents a radical innovation in vertical transportation. Our mission is to provide a futuristic passenger experience that whisks passengers to their destinations swiftly and effortlessly.


HYPRLIFT represents a radical innovation in vertical transportation. Our mission is to provide a futuristic passenger experience that whisks passengers to their destinations swiftly and effortlessly.

Market & Opportunity

As the demand for space in densely populated urban areas increases, the need for taller buildings becomes paramount. HYPRLIFT is a next-generation elevator that represents a radical innovation in vertical transportation that will meet the demands of these taller buildings.

J. Neto

“The HYPRLIFT system seems to be a logical solution and the next major advancement in elevator design and technology for supertall buildings.”

Joseph Neto, Area V.P. – New York
Lerch Bates Inc.

P. Weismantle

“I am in support of the development of the HYPRLIFT tractive drive system…this potentially game-changing technology.”

Peter Weismantle, Managing Director
Peter Weismantle LLC
Former Director of Supertall Building
Technology, Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture

J. Saling

“HYPRLIFT’s approach eliminates the limiting factor in the height of a building – elevator wire ropes. Concepts that achieve that are eminently worthwhile to continue to grow and develop.”

John Saling, Principal Partner
Fortune Shepler Saling Inc.

A next-generation elevator

HYPRLIFT is a next-generation elevator intended for skyscraper-class buildings. Unlike traditional elevators that rely on cables to hoist the cab up and down in a dedicated shaft, HYPRLIFT cabs are self-propelled, high-performance electric vehicles that are not bound to a single shaft, but instead navigate autonomously throughout multiple shafts. In lieu of cables, HYPRLIFT cabs are equipped with an onboard dynamic-tractive drive system that engages with the shaft and propels cabs at high speed.

By omitting the cables, HYPRLIFT allows multiple cabs to travel within the same shaft, enabling greater transport capacity and shorter wait times to be achieved using fewer shafts. This is important because by reducing the number of shafts, HYPRLIFT frees-up valuable space in the building, space that can then be utilized for revenue-generating purposes. What’s more, omitting the cables allows HYPRLIFT cabs to travel non-stop to virtually any height, eliminating the need for skylobbies and freeing-up more valuable space.


James Hutchinson

Founder & Chief Executive Officer

James Hutchinson founded Hyprlift Inc. in April 2019 in his pursuit to create a next-generation elevator that will revolutionize the industry he has been part of for nearly three decades.

As a 29-year veteran of business development and enterprise sales in the vertical transportation technologies space, preceded by eight years as a mechanical design engineer, Jim sought to combine his passion and experience to become a driving force for radical innovation in an industry that’s not seen significant innovation in over 165 years.

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Dr. Robert Nakata, PhD, MBA

Chief Technology Officer

Dr. Robert Nakata is Hyprlift’s Chief Technology Officer. In this leadership role, Bob is responsible for guiding the overall design and development of the Hyprlift system as well as developing the engineering teams necessary for the successful execution of our product development plan.

As a 40-year veteran of Silicon Valley startups and public companies in the technology industry, Bob is a subject matter expert on EV motors, power systems, IOT sensors and radar remote sensing. Prior to joining Hyprlift, Bob held leadership roles at several technology companies including CEO and CTO at Kai Medical, V.P. of Engineering at Verifone, V.P. of Worldwide Engineering at Interwave Communications, and Senior V.P. of Operations and Engineering at GWCom. Bob has also traveled extensively to international locations such as Japan, Taiwan, Singapore, and South Korea to establish strategic partnerships with foreign manufacturers.

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Dr. Daniel Johnson, PhD

Lead Mechanical Engineer

As Lead Mechanical Engineer, Dr. Daniel Johnson is responsible for the design and development of Hyprlift’s mechanical systems. Dan was instrumental in providing the foundational engineering design and modeling work behind Hyprlift’s revolutionary dynamic-tractive drive system.

Prior to joining Hyprlift, Dan was the co-founder and CTO at Exo Dynamics, a technology startup in the medical device industry. He was co-inventor of the patented technology that the company is bringing to market. Dan also lead a successful effort to raise seed funding to develop the company’s proof-of-concept prototype.

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Erik Bleyle

Product Development Engineer

As Product Development Engineer, Erik is relied upon for his deep knowledge of elevator systems as well as his ability to design-build in our R&D facility. With over 35 years of experience installing and servicing elevator systems, Erik possesses a working knowledge of elevator codes and best practices.

Prior to joining Hyprlift, Erik was founder and president at Bleyle Elevator, an independent elevator service company based in the San Francisco area. Under Erik’s leadership, Bleyle Elevator grew their service portfolio to over 1000 elevator units under contract.

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Advisory Council

Peter Weismantle, FAIA RIBA

Prior to founding his own consultancy firm, Peter was the Director of Supertall Building Technology at Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture for 12 years, preceded by 31 years as an Associate Partner at Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. During his distinguished career, Peter was the senior technical architect for several world-renowned supertall building projects including Jin Mao Tower in Shanghai, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, currently the world’s tallest building, and the Jeddah Tower in Saudi Arabia, currently under construction but when completed will surpass the Burj Khalifa as the world’s tallest building.

Professor Mark Cutkosky, PhD

Mark is head of the Mechanical Engineering Department at Stanford University. Mark applies analyses, simulations, and experiments to the design and control of robotic hands, tactile sensors, and devices for human/computer interaction. His research work at Stanford includes the development of patented technology for scaling smooth vertical surfaces using anisotropic frictional materials, a.k.a. gecko-inspired dry adhesives.


Joseph Neto

Joe is the New York Area V.P. for Lerch Bates, a global leader in the elevator consultancy space. In this role, Joe oversees Lerch Bates’ operations throughout the New York City metropolitan area, consulting on many iconic high-rise building projects including Hudson Yards, the largest commercial real estate development project in U.S. history. With over 35 years of elevator industry experience, Joe is regarded as an expert in his field evidenced by his many industry-related licenses and certifications.

James Fortune

Jim is the founder and principal partner at Fortune Shepler Saling (FS2), a leading consultancy firm in the vertical transportation industry. Jim’s reputation as the world’s foremost expert on supertall buildings was earned as a result of his consulting on the world’s tallest buildings including Taipei 101 in Taiwan, the IFC and ICC towers in China, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, and the Jeddah Tower (formerly known as the Kingdom Tower) currently under construction in Saudi Arabia. Drawing on over 40 years of elevator industry experience, Jim has authored technical papers and spoken at industry events about advancements in elevator technology. Jim is also credited for having invented the “Lifeboat” Emergency Elevator Evacuation Operations used in supertall buildings.

John Saling

John is a principal partner at Fortune Shepler Saling (FS2), a leading consultancy firm in the vertical transportation industry. John oversees projects for FS2 in the northeast area of the country including New York, Philadelphia, and Chicago. He has also consulted on international supertall building projects such as the Burg Khalifa in Dubai, currently the world’s tallest building. Prior to joining FS2, John held the positions of Director of Construction Operations and Director of New Installation Sales in Manhattan for ThyssenKrupp Elevator.

Louis Robertson

Lou is the Senior Machinist in the scientific instrument lab at the University of Hawaii’s Institute for Astronomy. With over 30 years of experience fabricating complex components and assemblies for both private and government funded projects, Lou uses his hands-on knowledge of manufacturing methods to advise engineers on the use of best design-for-manufacturing (DFM) and design-for-assembly (DFA) practices.


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