Tri Lift Inc. Provides Genie Boom Lift for Rockefeller Center Tree Installation | Powered Access

The 2014 Rockefeller Center Christmas tree arrived Nov. 8 with the help of Genie dealer Tri Lift Inc., which provided a Genie -85 telescopic boom to assist the 76-ft. Norway spruce into position.

Started With a Call
According to Tri Lift rental manager Mike Degennaro, their involvement started with a phone call from one of their other branches.

“As a company, we’ve been doing regular business with Tishman Speyer, the NYC building management giant, since about 2001,” he says. “They have some of our equipment long term and rent other units from us on a yearly basis. They called into our Farmingdale (NY) branch on Long Island looking for an 85-foot boom to assist in the tree erection process and, since we provide the aerial units for them, it got turned over to us.”

As luck would have it, the New Haven branch had just taken delivery of a brand new Genie S-85 boom lift, so the call could not have been more timely.

Non-Standard Rental
Degennaro says they received the order on Tuesday of that week, and the unit had to leave their yard in Connecticut at 3:30 a.m. on Friday to be in Rockefeller Plaza for 5:30. Once there, the driver had to sit and wait until the crew’s work was done and immediately bring it back.

“It was certainly not one of our standard rentals, but it was a great opportunity for us to be a part of something so high-profile and meaningful to people here and throughout the country,” he says. “The main part of the actual raising of the tree was handled using a massive truck crane. But the Genie boom was critical for the rigging crew who needed it to manage the guy wires which secure the 12-ton tree after it is placed in its pedestal.”

He adds that the entire tree-raising project was being streamed live through a New York City TV station’s website so, for most of the day, everyone in their office was watching the live stream in a corner of their computers.

“It made us all feel like we were really a part of it all.”

Honorable Project
“This company was started back in 1968, so we’ve got some experience—and inventory—to bring to the table,” he says. “Just at this location alone, we offer more than 350 aerial machines and about 1,150 forklifts. This project was a very nice opportunity for us. We were definitely excited when the Farmingdale branch called us about it because, in this area, nothing says Christmas more than the Rockefeller Center tree. To keep with the spirit of things, I felt like we should have put some Christmas lights on the Genie lift as we were working out there. But the boom did its job well and it was an honor just for us to participate.”