Delay in Automated Doors on Campus

by | Jan 24, 2020 | Featured, News, Uncategorized

By Madison Gummow

NAIT automated doors failing on campus

Photo by Shawna Bannerman

Some automated doors on NAIT’s campus have a delay in opening – sometimes they do not work at all.

Michelle Patterson-Nipp is a first year Baking & Pastry Arts student who uses the doors by Ernest’s when coming and going to school. In her program they have to carry heavy loads of breads and other projects back and forth.

“When we’re working on projects and we have fragile sugar pieces that we want to take home and work on it’s nice to be able to push the button and have the door open because any movement you might break your project then you’re completely screwed!” said Patterson-Nipp.

Patterson-Nipp loves her program but has noticed the doors can be inconvenient on campus.

“It seems like it takes forever to open, sometimes I don’t stick around long enough to find out if it actually opens, but it’s not working as it should,” said Patterson-Nipp.

Robert Akkerman, the director of maintenance and facilities, says his office has received complaints regarding automated doors on campus.

“We get work requests all the time from all over the NAIT community,” said Akkerman. “In winter there’s much more because rocks and stuff get into the doorway and they don’t close properly so that creates operational issues.”

The newer buildings, such as the CAT building, have new handicap doors which are motion activated and open instantly but the older buildings have had the same doors since they were built.

“Some [doors] would have been installed when the buildings were built. As the handicap operators fail, we upgrade them. The move to motion sensors has only been in the last three years or so, so anything built before that time has the push button,” said Akkerman.

In the U building the buttons to activate the automated door exiting onto 118th St. have a label reading, “PUSH AND HOLD. WAIT 5 SECONDS.” The doors begin to open after about six seconds and are fully open at the 11 second mark. These doors are often broken and unresponsive when the button is pressed.

“I’m not sure. I’d have to look into that,” said Akkerman when asked about the delay.
Maintenance and operation checks of the automated doors are done once a year. If you come across a door on NAIT’s campus with a broken or insufficient automated door system you can email

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