Westmoreland courthouse annex repairs climb to nearly $600k
The Westmoreland County Courthouse Annex is getting a face-lift.
County commissioners this week approved spending $175,000 to have new limestone blocks installed along the base of the building that houses county offices. The project is in addition to a massive, $421,000 caulking and sealing program that has been ongoing for six weeks.
Public Works Director Greg McCloskey said crews sealing the eight-story building between Main Street and Pennsylvania Avenue identified a series of cracks and deterioration of limestone near the street level.
Wilson Restoration Inc. was hired in March to reseal the exterior of the office building, a project that officials said should be completed every five years but hadn’t been done in nearly two decades. As a result, work crews found about 60 percent of the building’s limestone blocks are damaged beyond repair.
“We were getting water infiltration into the annex,” McCloskey said.
Officials estimated that it would cost about $250,000 to replace the limestone. But Wilson Restoration, which has yet to complete the caulking and sealing project, agreed to replace the damaged stone for less money.
“It’s a significant savings since they are already on-site,” McCloskey said.
He said the annex sustained no interior damage from the water issues.
County officials have spent much of the last decade trying to fix water damage in the courthouse complex.
Commissioners in 2010 paid more than $55,000 to repair water damage to several fourth-floor courtrooms under the courthouse dome. Three years later, officials signed off on a $438,000 project to repair and seal the exterior stone of the century-old domed courthouse structure that continued to leak after earlier fixes.
In 2014, commissioners paid nearly $160,000 to make repairs to courtrooms that sustained new water damage before the exterior fixes were completed.
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