Fire Protection of Enclosed-Mall Shopping Complexes

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Journal titleTechnical Paper, Division of Building Research, National Research Council Canada
Subjectshopping centres; fire spread; fire protection; smoke controls
AbstractEnclosed shopping malls have won increasing public acceptance in Canada, such that a substantial proportion of the shopping complexes now planned or under construction feature enclosed climate-controlled malls. The merchandising principles of this building type require an open and unrestricted interior space, which in consequence lacks any barrier to the spread of fire or smoke through the mall to all parts of the complex. The concentration of people and goods in this characteristic extensive and undivided space presents potentialities for panic and life hazard unequalled in other types of modern building. No deaths have as yet been reported in North American enclosed- mall shopping complexes, but there have, on the other hand, been large property losses. The purpose of this paper is to examine hazards to life and property that are markedly prominent in enclosed-mall shopping complexes, to enumerate a range of fire proteciton features that might be used to offset the hazards, and to comment on design and implementation of those features. The result is meant to be useful as a designer's reference. The specific topics discussed are fire spread, smoke movement, evacuation, fire department operations, and water damage.
Publication date
AffiliationNRC Institute for Research in Construction; National Research Council Canada
Peer reviewedNo
NRC number13976
NPARC number20375550
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Record identifier99cb8e95-0e00-493f-b37a-017db69ee8ca
Record created2012-07-23
Record modified2016-05-09
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