The scope of work included the deconstruction and reconstruction of the entire terra cotta cornice, spanning 600 lineal feet, performed within 2 years while the hotel was in full operation.

This restoration was deemed necessary due to the results of previous work in the 1990’s using gypsum concrete that had caused one entire suspended course of terra cotta at the 15th floor level to rapidly deteriorate. In order to replace this course, the entire cornice above had to be disassembled and units cataloged to access the failed course.

Each of the 1,500 terra cotta units had to be removed, numbered, cleaned, repaired, and reset with the use of modern stainless anchors and flashing. Seven corner areas had to be dismantled and rebuilt while the roof slab above was held in place with shoring. Six hundred lineal feet of new concrete termination curb had to be poured on the existing roof slab.

VIP has worked extensively with the engineers and hotel staff to coordinate the placement of stiff-leg scaffold and mast climber equipment and develop a complex shoring plan under the existing sidewalk to carry scaffold loads. Modification was required at the newly rebuilt main entrance canopy to allow for pass-through shoring to carry the load of the scaffolding above, while maintaining full access at the main entrance.

VIP also had to map out areas of the roof that could support large numbers of terra cotta units and build enclosed work areas on the roof that included stone repair stations, as well as a fully-equipped metal fabrication shop to make custom stainless steel anchors on-site to accommodate the many different stone anchor configurations/requirements.

Currently, the engineer is working with the VIP to develop a plan to add to the current roof scope to include drainage. The roof membrane will be replaced at the termination curb, and new drains will be installed to more efficiently shed water. The proposed work will include core drilling through the concrete support slab and beam to accommodate existing drainage location within the structure of the building.