Restoring the Capitol's West Front

by Virginia K. Dorris, 50 Sterling Pl., Brooklyn, N.Y. 11217,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1985, Vol. 55, Issue 9, Pg. 36-38

Document Type: Feature article


After 25 years of debate, preservation (rather than extension) of the West Front of the U.S. Capitol building in Washington, D.C. has begun. A network of stainless steel rods is being placed to shore up the spalling and deteriorated facade in a project that will be completed in 1987. A total of 12,000 ft. of drilling is required, all of it through unknown characteristics of the original sandstone walls. Grouting and stainless steel will also reinforce the foundation. About 25% of the sandstone on the facade will be replaced by limestone, painted to match the original.

Subject Headings: Stainless steel | Sandstone | Government buildings | Building envelope | Walls | Spalling | Rods

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