Custom Installation Case Study: 25’ Custom Door for Holt Renfrew

As part of its recent expansion, Holt Renfrew is opening a new store in the new southern expansion of the Square One mall in Mississauga. Naturally a security door would be needed, but it would have to match the style and prestige of the location. To provide that, Dynamic Closures would have to build its tallest door ever: 25 feet in height.


Challenging New Features

The door chosen by IBI Group Architects, Toronto (Janson Goldstein LLP, NY, principal architect) was a StarLight 126 Straight Pattern. There were a few custom modifications, like the addition of heavy duty sleeves on all the rods for a sleek look.



Like many of our security doors, this one is designed to hang from a track in the ceiling. But the extra height would mean extra weight – about 1,000 pounds of it. We wanted to make sure this door would have the essential Dynamic Closures durability and would be performing smoothly decades into the future.

To solve this initial challenge, a special grade of stainless steel was used on upper fasteners to deal with the weight.



The second implication of the increased height was potential difficulties operating the locking mechanism, which needs to have an upper and lower lock to keep the door securely in place. Additionally, a special high security cylinder lock was supplied by the client and would need to be worked into the door design.

Reinforced locking posts were used to deal with the extra door weight, and inside them is situated the rod that operates the locking mechanism. The weight of this rod was reduced through the use of a special alloy that maintains strength but is still easy to operate. The top lock control is still at arm height, so no one has to go up a ladder twice a day in their designer heels!


Dynamic Closures takes testing very seriously, and has a comprehensive 6-step design and testing process. Not only do we do separate rapid-cycle testing to simulate decades’ worth of opening and closing in days, we also test to failure so we know how much weight our hanger and fastener materials can take.

We also set up and thoroughly test all of our doors on our shop floor, especially custom doors like this one with added height and weight. We get real people to open, close and lock the doors to ensure ease of use by the end users. By the time the doors arrive at the installation site, we know they match specifications perfectly and won’t present problems for retail store staff.

In spite of the incredible size and weight of the door, it opens and closes easily for the staff without motorized assistance.



The additional weight and height of the door meant a larger team was needed for installation – 6 people plus an electric lift and scissor lift were used.

Because the door was so tall, it needed additional reinforcement for transportation and installation (one hung in place the weight would be evenly distributed). We built a custom pallet and platforms to support the door and keep it contained for rotation and lifting of the door into place – basically the entire installation could be done with the support on, so everything was kept together. We used standard construction lifts to carry and position the door with the custom support framework still attached. After the door was hung from the top track, the palleting was removed.

Once the door was in place, we did some additional work on the pocket in the walls, which wasn’t built to accommodate room for track and roller lubrication from within the enclosed area.


Security Can Be Chic Too

The Square One Mall south extension is known for its high-end designer stores and luxury services to match. The space is very open and full of natural light, with every architectural detail reinforcing the feeling of affluence that makes shoppers want to spend on big-ticket items.

These days, store branding extends all the way to after-hours security enclosures. They not only have to fit with the look and feel of the space, they need to entice after-hours window shoppers to return and make purchases. Everything about the store needs to fulfill the mandate of product presentation.

Dynamic Closures has a wide variety of visual options that can be custom tailored to almost any space. If you’re designing a retail space and are wondering about the options, our main product line is just the tip of the iceberg. Our Customer Support team is highly experienced in dealing with the needs of architects and interior designers.

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