Renovations at Province House
October 16, 2013
Province House National Historic Site is undergoing renovations in advance of the 2014 celebrations which will mark the 150th anniversary of the Charlottetown Conference. Parks Canada and the contractor, Clifford Restoration Limited, are committed to ensuring the work is completed prior to the launch of 2014 celebrations at Province House on December 31st, 2013. Clifford Restorations Limited has been working on the building since mid July, and has the renovations well underway.
Work to the interior of the building is on schedule, and will be finished by October 21st when painting will begin. Province House will resume normal activities inside the building in time for the fall sitting of the Prince Edward Island legislative assembly.
Some of the masonry walls were beginning to show signs of deterioration, so steel reinforcements were added for stabilization (left); A plastic seal was erected around the construction areas in the gallery to try to reduce the amount of dust settling below. When the project concludes, the building will be thoroughly cleaned (right).
Steel beams were screwed into the existing structure inside the interior walls. The steel beam and the pins secured the stone in place.
The exterior work is presently on schedule to be completed by the first week of December. The removal of scaffolding and cleanup of the site should be completed by the week of December 16-20.
Despite extensive scaffolding and construction equipment on the South and East sides of the building, visitors to Province House could take advantage of the West and North sides for photo opportunities and to gain access to the building. Both the first and second floors remained open to visitors throughout the construction period.
Prior to beginning invasive work on the exterior stone, the conservator carefully inspected the facade and labeled problem areas in chalk. In this case, some stones were protruding from the building while another stone had broken off completely. The conservator wrote “OUT” on the stones that were protruding to indicate that the stones may have to come out so workers could investigate what was causing the displacement.
Workers at the site remove a large stone from the building to investigate what is causing the stone to protrude from the facade. A layer of rubble between the interior and exterior stone was beginning to break down in some places. The mix of cement and stone was eroding due to water seepage. The rubble was repaired, and cracks and fissures were filled to avoid future damage caused by water. This will help to prevent stone displacement in the future.
Workers use hand implements such as an air-powered needle gun to remove the scaling surface of the stone, making the facade smoother, more aesthetic and free of debris. Once problem areas are cleared of loose debris, cracks and discoloration, the stone will be filled in using a colour matched mortar.
Parks Canada would like to thank stakeholders, residents and visitors to Province House for their ongoing support and patience through the renovation period.
If you would like more information, please contact Barbara MacDonald, External Relations Manager, by phone at (902) 672-6422 or by e-mail at email@example.com.