Two Dozen Ellison Custom Balanced Doors Revive Boston’s State Transportation Building

Stainless steel doors specified for exceptional durability and smooth operation

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

FALCONER, NY… The Massachusetts Transportation Building—a mixed-use facility in downtown Boston with independent tenant and state offices, restaurants, a day care, and offices for nearby Emerson College and Beantown Trolley Tours—now features two dozen Ellison Bronze stainless steel balanced doors. The eight-story, 902,000 sq. ft. building, located in the heart of Boston’s theater district, was originally designed and built as a “showpiece of energy efficiency.”

The building’s construction was completed in 1984 and the original entrance doors were in use for more than 30 years until 2018. These doors were no longer performing as they should, causing issues related to ADA accessibility and overall compliance with related standards. Aesthetically, the entrances looked dated because of scratches, chipped paint, and decades of use, and what was once considered a symbol of energy efficiency, the State Transportation Building fell behind the times and building managers knew they needed an upgrade.

The building’s main doors were replaced with 24 stainless steel Ellison custom balanced doors, and select entryways were equipped with PowerNow® Stanley® Magic-Force™ low-energy concealed overhead power operators to meet the latest ADA standards. The doors feature 4" high top rails, 10" high bottom rails, and 4" wide stiles on each side.

“The stainless steel balanced doors are installed at various high-usage areas, so quality and longevity were of utmost importance. Ellison was exactly what management was looking for,” says René Bouchard, Professional Specifier, President and CEO of Smoot Associates, Inc. “I think Ellison is becoming the standard of quality in the city of Boston.”

The State Transportation Building sees an abundance of visitors daily and experiences stretches of heavy foot traffic. Ellison balanced doors are ideal for transportation spaces because of their quality construction coupled with durable hardware components. This combination lends long-term performance to all Ellison entrance systems, allowing them to last through decades of use and ever-changing weather cycles.

Designed with precision, Ellison balanced doors and frames are formed and welded using durable sheet materials that give them a rigid, unitized structure and helps them last much longer than typical commercial entryways. The balanced hardware sets them apart even further, notably the inset pivot point located at two-thirds the width of the door.

“I’ve been working with balanced doors for 28 years now and I always recommend Ellison,” says Frank Greatorex, Jr. of K&G Entrances, the glazing contractor who performed the installation. “It was a trouble-free installation process and the updated entrances look much more inviting now.”

The new balanced doors successfully modernize the State Transportation Building, shaping the first interaction for visitors at its main access points. The renovations provide the benefit of long-lasting doors for owners and management, but pedestrians reap the benefits too with an effortless transition upon entering and exiting the building.

The Massachusetts Transportation Building entrance renovations were completed in January 2018. The project team included Imai Keller Moore Architects, Smoot Associates, Inc., and K&G Entrances Inc.

About Ellison: Ellison Bronze, Inc., located in Falconer, NY, invented the balanced door in 1927. Today, Ellison leads the industry by providing custom marquee doors to the world’s most famous addresses. Made with the highest quality materials and unparalleled craftsmanship, Ellison doors are the standard to which all other commercial entry doors are compared the world over. Ellison also provides superior customer service by maintaining every record and drawing it has produced, and offers replacement balanced hardware for every door it has ever made. For more information, visit


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