Baltimore’s 150-year-old city hall is a stunning landmark and civic representation of the city. Over the years, the Second Empire-style building, clad in locally quarried Cockeysville marble, experienced normal weathering and deterioration, given its age. To preserve the structure, which is one of the oldest working city halls in the country, Baltimore embarked on a multi-phased decade-long project to restore the exterior stone.
That’s where BAC signatory contractor Lorton Stone’s expertise comes into play. The crew is conducting delicate cleaning to the facade and repointing, patching, and repairing the marble in line with historic preservation standards. Lorton’s stone carvers are also charged with carefully removing damaged pieces of stone so that they can be replicated and replaced.
When it comes to restoring an important piece of architectural history, there’s no question it’s critical to have skilled crews conducting the repairs. That’s why the project team for Baltimore City Hall included IMI’s Historic Masonry Preservation Certificate Program (HMPC) in the specifications. HMPC is an intensive weeklong, 50-hour program that combines hands-on craft techniques with restoration theory. Craftworkers learn their role in the overall execution of the preservation project, including the history of the preservation movement, traditional materials and methods, and advancements in preservation technology.
The crew at Lorton, already experienced stone carvers and masons, chose to further their knowledge by taking HMPC. So when the project went out to bid with HMPC in the specifications, Lorton Stone was a natural fit to meet the requirements for highly-trained restoration specialists.
Now, this shining example of early government architecture in the United States will be restored to its original splendor so that it can continue to serve as a source of pride for Baltimore.