Naval Academy chapel dome slated for renovation

Danielle Ohl
Contact Reporterdohl@capgaznews.com

The Naval Academy will renovate the iconic chapel dome beginning this winter.

The academy will soon commence the $8.9 million project, which will restore parts of the masonry wall and dome in the next year. The academy awarded G-W Management Services LLC the contract in late September.

“I am writing to make you aware of a significant project that is about to commence at the chapel,” academy Chief of Staff Capt. George Lang wrote in a memo to academy faculty and staff.

“Throughout this work, the building will remain operational for services, funerals and weddings, but it will have a different appearance for the duration of the project.”

Crews will remove masonry blocks in sections to catalog and clean them before returning the stone to the dome masonry wall. They will also replace sections of the copper roof on the nave and base of the dome. Repair to the dome will include new solder joints, minor patches and sealing of vertical roof seams.

Workers will install new skylights on the dome, wrote Lang, but the green patina will remain the same “iconic view that you see today.”

Scaffolding will first go up on the Larson hall side and rear of the chapel, then shift to the Buchanan House side. During summer and fall 2019, the front entrance will have scaffolding across it, Lang wrote. The dome itself will have scaffolding along the wall up to the base of the copper.

Pedestrians and drivers should be aware of the construction, as it will block off parts of the sidewalks and road.

Sidewalk and door closures will correspond with the scaffolding; when the north side of the chapel is scaffolded, that side of the chapel will remain closed. When scaffolding goes up on the south side, the north side will open and the south side will close.

The road behind the chapel will be closed to traffic.

“The continued investments in our buildings is of great value to our mission,” Lang wrote. “This work is a vital part of the maintenance of the National Historic Landmark buildings that we operate in at the academy.”

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