Sheldon Hall to undergo restorations

Oswego State looks to the future, with numerous exterior renovations on the way for the historic Sheldon Hall.

The college has started work on a $10 million preservation project aimed at updating and restoring many key elements of Sheldon Hall. Funding has been secured for the project in recognition of Oswego State’s 150th anniversary.

The new renovations combined with the $4.6 million interior renovations in 2006 will bring restoration full circle.

According to Robert Lloyd; project coordinator for Facilities, Design and Construction at Oswego State; Sheldon Hall has suffered nearly 100 years of aging and weather. Many exterior renovations will be made to the building in several stages over the next couple of years. The initial steps on the project began a few weeks ago and will take until 2012 or 2013 to finish, said Lloyd.

The college has selected to hire PAC & Associates of Oswego to do the construction and renovation for the project.

"We’ve had experience working with PAC & Associates in the past and they have always done a great job," Lloyd said.

PAC & Associates will start the brunt of the work in the spring, but have already begun to take samples of the historic terracotta brick from numerous parts of the building including the arches and columns.

"Moisture has started to get behind the terracotta, which has caused the material to blister and peel off," Lloyd said.

PAC & Associates will eventually send about 80 samples from many parts of the building to be used as a template for new terracotta to be made. Once the terracotta is replaced, the restoration team will then wash all the bricks along the sides of the building.

One of the most notable changes that will come from the restoration project will be replacing the old copper roof on the cupola as well as acquiring analog clocks for all four sides of the tower. Lloyd said all the windows and doors will be replaced with historic replicas as well.

Next on the list of renovations will be to replace the old concrete steps in the front of Sheldon Hall. Lloyd said that, PAC & Associates will eventually build granite steps, as the material last much longer than the traditional concrete. Finally, all six original columns will be replaced with new, structurally sound material that will last for decades.

"I’m real excited about this project," Lloyd said. "Personally I love restoration work and working on this particular building is exciting."