APS : Architectural Preservation Services

Projects

McKim Community Center

Baltimore, Maryland

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Client

City of Baltimore, Department of Public Works, Bureau of General Services

Completion Date

2008

Background

Dating from 1833, the McKim Community Center was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1973 because of its historical and architectural significance: it housed the first free school in Baltimore and one of the first in the United States, and is said to be the most accurate Greek-style building in the City of Baltimore. The City of Baltimore contacted APS because a large section of the Aquia Creek sandstone cornice unexpectedly broke and fell from the building.

Scope

The project entailed not only repairing the section of broken cornice, but also conducting a material-condition survey of the entire building and providing recommendations for repair. Among other treatments, APS specified repair materials; pinned four sections of stone back in place, using epoxy and stainless steel pins; used custom-matched restoration mortars to fill voids; applied various layers of pigments in a water suspension to simulate the surrounding colors of the sandstone; and added a fixative wash to the finished work.