Hegge lays out 5-phase restoration project for the Times

    The Cathedral on Ash Street got some much-needed support Monday evening during the Crookston City Council Ways & Means Committee meeting where they voted unanimously to commit water and wastewater service line infrastructure to the property, and waive building permit fees associated with a rehabilitation project as matching funds for the Prairie Skyline Foundation’s grant application.

    The final stamp of approval will be decided at the next City Council meeting on February 26 where the item will be added to their consent agenda.

    Cost estimate to run water and wastewater services to the property line of the Cathedral on Ash Street is $8,380. Services inside the building, when it’s ready, will need to be done separately by a plumber. The cost of the building permit fees will also be determined at a later time. City Administrator Shannon Stassen noted that any commitment by the city would be contingent upon success of the grant application and implementation of the rehabilitation project.

    PSF director Kay Hegge tells the Times that this could be considered as part of “Phase I” of the Cathedral’s project and they will be applying for a Minnesota Historical Society Legacy grant to help stabilize the building. She says Phase II will include the restoration of the window frames, doors, plumbing, heating and cooling, and Phase III involves interior work.

    “We estimate three years for the project depending on donations from the community,” Hegge explained. “The estimates coming in will determine how many priorities we can include in this application.”

    Hegge and the PSF plan to turn the former Cathedral into the “Young at HArt Center,” a community center with art where people can go to create or just have someone to talk to.

    When asked what work has been done on the Cathedral thus far, Hegge told the Times that she and other volunteers have hosted an Artspace visit, developed a reuse plan with Artspace in 2010, boarded up windows, maintained groundskeeping, removed pigeon droppings from steeples (netting was left open), asbestos tested (found nothing), refastened belfry window frame, removed high school auditorium chairs, removed remaining debris, repaired a leak in roof, and gutted the North Sacristy.

    Some of the projects in store for the Cathedral on Ash Street, Hegge says, include:
Phase I (Priority One)

    • North Sacristy roof - collapsed flat roof needs to be completely reconstructed and re-roofed
    • South Sacristy Roof - partial collapse of flat roof and needs to be repaired, and re-roofed
    • Clay tile coping - reset loose coping, missing coping needs to be replicated
    • North and South Sacristy floors - collapsed floor structure; north collapsed floor structure, south needs to be completely or partially reconstructed
    • Cathedral windows - stabilization of building requires sealing window openings with panels, replacing West 3
    • Belfry louvered openings - refasten and paint existing wood louvered elements
    • Professional cleaning bio-waste from attic; “We got the rest out,” adds Hegge.
    • Steps at west facade - existing sand stone stoop elements will be realigned and reset into new foundation
    • Service door and window in rear need to be replaced including high security locks

Phase II (Priority Two)

    • Masonry repair at foundation in locations damaged by water due to negative slope condition at grade at gutters above and below windows  
    • Fill and grading - to achieve positive drainage away from the structure for water runoff from roof; “We will plant Memorial Gardens as a fundraiser,” Hegge adds.
    • New larger gutters, downspouts, splash blocks - to check erosion of mortar and from malfunctioning rain water collection system and direct water away from the building at grade
    • Painting of exterior metal and wood features while renting the lift
    • Provide electrical service to building for lighting and ventilation to work on window restoration, provide a large enough service for a theater and ten art stations, and kitchen.

Phase III (Priority Three)

    • Spire roofs – replace five shingles, add more structure to inside; install steps
    • Roof flashing - address problem areas where existing flashing has failed
    • Main roof shingles - replace three flat shingles

Phase IV (Priority Four)

    • Provide heating system
    • Provide sewer and water, plumbing
    • Metal crosses - sheetmetal crosses require repair and refinishing

Phase V (Priority Five)

    • Expand north transept door for accessibility
    • Provide custom built front doors, and North Sacristy door