Jon M. Huntsman School of Business

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Tuesday, March 31, 2015


There are 324 doors in the new building. Some doors need to be fire-rated – most do not. We want most doors to have electronic access controls, but some doors do not need this. Some doors need to have electronic scheduling capability, but most do not. Some doors are wood and some are glass. Some doors just need an old-fashioned key lock. Some doors need emergency exit bars. Most do not. I could go on. And on… It may be hard to believe, but it gets more complicated depending on how many functions a door needs to serve.

I never realized how complicated doors could be. We’ve spent a lot of time over the past few weeks figuring out exactly what each one of the 324 doors needs to do. The most surprising finding: There are very few doors that are exactly like any other door.

After our research into the various functions each of the doors needs to have, we all got together last week for a “door meeting.” We went through all 324 doors one-by-one. It took two hours. Present in the meeting were representatives of the business school, the university architect/job manager, key/lock specialists from the university Facilities Office, the building architects, representatives of the general contractor, the architect’s door advisor, and the firm that we hired to install the doors.

Ken Snyder
Ken Snyder
I said two things in the meeting. It was about principles. When we got into a difficult discussion about how we could get a certain door to serve multiple functions, I questioned whether or not we even needed that door. Principle #1: Keep it simple! In another case, doors were designed to serve the needs of the HVAC system, but ran counter to the needs of our students. Principle #2: This building is about the students!

I am happy to report that, due to the diligent preparation of the many people involved, we resolved the specifications of every door except one. This door requires a little more research into fire code, and technologies available to serve multiple functions. We’ll come back and re-visit that one door at a future meeting.

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