Designed in the mid-1920s, Memorial Hall is a four-story, multi-wythe masonry building with steep sloped slate and built-up roofs over a steel frame and concrete structure. Built to memorialize World War I, the building features terra cotta gargoyles, nurses and soldiers along the outside of the building. THP was challenged to perform restoration work that would last for another 50 to 100 years with minimal maintenance.
Two different roofing systems required upgrades. Since slate has a 100- to 200-year lifespan, opting for a complete replacement would maximize the roof’s longevity. The EPDM roof was replaced with a durable, multi-layer asphaltic system that can be walked on and holds up well to maintenance activities.
The terra cotta embellishments, some weighing 1,000 pounds or more, posed special challenges. THP found that the original terra cotta pieces had suffered a great deal of distress that was not visible from the outside. THP used a specialized concrete fiber mix to replicate the terra cotta on site. Since similar pieces varied in size, custom molds were made from each of the terra cotta originals — more than 1,000 pieces, plus spires.
THP Limited is a structural and architectural engineering design firm. With a mission to shape a more resilient and equitable future, we put people at the center of everything we do.
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