Refurbishing Exterior Doors of a Major Ontario University


A major university in Ontario needed to refresh its exterior appearance. The existing doors had experienced normal wear and abuse through many years of use. This project needed to be carried out with minimal disruption to the academic activities carried out by faculty, staff and students. The complexity of this project included the fact that 50% of the doors had historical significance to the institution, which needed to be preserved.


This project encompassed the exterior doors of various buildings throughout the campus. Good organization and coordination was required to complete this project efficiently with minimal disruption to academic activities. The scope of wood to be refinished included:

  • 30 8-ft doors (historical)
  • 30 12-ft doors

Traditional Solution

Replacing the historical doors would eliminate an important part of the university’s image. Removing the old doors, and purchasing and installing the new doors would increase the amount of coordination and time to execute the project. Since the academic term continues throughout the spring and summer months, increasing the time to execute the project could cause the staff and students significant interruptions in accessing the campus buildings and services. The client would need to explore a different option to preserve their historical image and minimize disruption to academic operations. Replacing the doors would also require significant capital, estimated to be $276,000 and equated to an average of $4,600 per exterior door.

Toronto Refurbishing Solution

Toronto Refurbishing, through its membership with the Ontario Historical Society, is an expert at preserving historical wood fixtures. Environmentally-friendly water-based technology was also used to minimize smells and off-gases so staff and faculty could continue normal academic operations. Toronto Refurbishing also scheduled the project during the less busy summer months to reduce disruptions during busier months. The cost to the university was $65,400, equating to an average of $1,090 per exterior door. This amounted to a capital cost savings of approximately $210,600. 

Do you need to meet new design requirements with your wood refinishing? We’ve got you covered! Not only can we restore wood millwork to its original condition, we can also alter its colour and provide a variety of different finishes. 

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