Bellefonte

Bellefonte historical monument to be repaired and preserved

Gary Hoover sits on the steps in front of the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial and Curtin Monument outside the Centre County Courthouse in Bellefonte. The board of commissioners on Tuesday approved a contract to restore and preserve the more than 100-year-old monument.
Gary Hoover sits on the steps in front of the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial and Curtin Monument outside the Centre County Courthouse in Bellefonte. The board of commissioners on Tuesday approved a contract to restore and preserve the more than 100-year-old monument. psheehan@centredaily.com

The Centre County board of commissioners on Tuesday approved a contract to restore and preserve the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial and Curtin Monument located in front of the courthouse.

AP Architects, of State College, will oversee the project, which will cost about $100,000.

Sue Hannegan, assistant director of planning and community development, said that due to a combination of weather elements and time, the more than 100-year-old granite, bronze and cast-iron monument has deteriorated and is need of repair.

“The history that’s there is irreplaceable,” Alan Popovich, owner of AP Architects said. “What we want to do is preserve it and bring this deterioration to as much as a halt as we can.”

The monument was designed by Joseph M. Huston and dedicated in 1906. Huston also designed the Capitol Building in Harrisburg. In 1974, the monument was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

Last year, the county was awarded a Keystone Historic Preservation Construction grant of almost $50,000 through the state Historical and Museum Commission. As part of the grant, the county is required to match the funds.

Popovich said the project has two phases. The first will be a thorough cleaning of the monument, which will reveal the extent of the damage. The monument will weather for one year, and a second analysis will be conducted in spring 2018. After the analysis, the scope of the work will be realized and the restoration and preservation work will begin.

The project cost will not exceed the budgeted amount and if there are residual funds following completion, the county will be refunded, according to Popovich.

The work will begin June 19 and will be completed by the end of 2018.

“This is a several months process,” board Chairman Michael Pipe said. “But the end result is really going to help preserve something that is a gem to downtown Bellefonte.”

Leon Valsechi: 814-231-4631, @leon_valsechi

  Comments