Case Studies

Refurbish Wood Elevators In Downtown Skyscraper..Customer Saved $360,000



An international property management firm with buildings in downtown Toronto had a large complex where there were 2 problems with the wood paneled elevators. First, the wood panels in these elevators suffered from varying levels of mechanical damage and vandalism, generating negative lessee feedback. Second, the clients in this complex requested a “more modern” appearance in the elevators to better reflect the image of their firms. Refurbishing elevator wood panels is somewhat unique in that the finishing technology should be fire retardant for safety reasons. Additionally, if the building traffic is significant, elevators need to be available to move people so that the businesses that have leased space in the structure can maximize their potential. A very competitive business space leasing market in a soft economy meant that the property management firm had to be very careful about the cost of addressing these concerns



Refurbish the wood paneling in 45 elevators, repairing mechanical and vandalism damage while refreshing the colour to a more modern tone. Perform the work so that the elevators are available when necessary.

Alternative Solutions

Traditional Solution:

The property firm had quoted the replacement of the wood panels, in new colours, from a millwork vendor at $10,000 each. Therefore the total cost would be $450,000 to replace the panels in all 45 elevators. This included the dismounting and mounting of the new panels. This does not include any environmental impact statement of the cost of scrapping wood panels for 45 elevators. The property firm was unwilling to invest almost a half a million dollars in new elevator panels in a soft leasing market yet it still needed to respond to the customer complaints.


Toronto Refurbishing Solution:

Toronto Refurbishing, in conjunction with its core chemistry technology suppliers, has developed environmentally friendly water based technology that is fire retardant. Therefore, Toronto Refurbishing was able to offer a solution so that the elevators were able to be refinished, on site, overnight, in a new colour ready for use (no smell or off-gassing) with no disruption the following morning. By refinishing the elevators overnight the issue of disturbing traffic during business hours and the evening simply did not exist. The cost to the property management firm for Toronto Refurbishing to perform this work was $90,000, a cost savings of $360,000 versus traditional replacement. Additionally, there was no environmental impact because the panels were re-used and all finishing technology was water based.