Awards People

Restoration on Bowdoin’s Coles Tower Recognized


Coles Tower at Bowdoin College

Portland, ME – In appreciation of the great efforts taken to preserve historic properties across the state, Maine Preservation recognized Consigli Construction Co., Inc., for its outstanding work to restore Coles Tower at Bowdoin College. The “2015 Statewide Historic Preservation Honor Award for Restoration” specifically acknowledged the craftsmanship and engineering to repair the exterior of the building.

Featuring a base that flares 10 feet wider from the top, a roof parapet incapable of bearing the load of swing staging and concrete window soffits too deep to access, the building proved a difficult challenge for the team to access.

To overcome the hurdles, roof tie-offs and fall-protection supports were installed so that masons could access the entire building via swing staging. At the same time, craftspeople used a 180-foot ultra-boom lift for the first time in the Northeast to access other areas of the façade. Repairs included major restoration work to the brick and stone elements of the building.

The work was completed over an intensive two-shift, six-day-per-week schedule over 11 weeks between the spring and fall semesters.

Though the dormitory, built in 1964 and designed by architect Hugh Stubbins, remained an iconic symbol of the social change academic institutions went through at the time, several years of exposure to harsh winter elements caused the 16-story building to suffer from exposed steel, falling limestone, and major cracking in the exterior.