The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception

The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, one of only 3 active Cathedrals on the National Register of Historic Places, has been undergoing phased restoration for the past 15 years. This phase involved complete replication of the existing Portland brownstone entry portals, new footings and foundations for granite treads, parapet walls, plinth bases, bronze handrails, and replicated historic light fixtures.

This project, recently completed, began in the winter of 2009, and over the course of 2 winter seasons, is finally ready to be opened to the general public for access. The original brownstone, severely deteriorated due to improper bedding, has been a safety hazard on this cathedral for some time. The new entry portal stone is a St. Bee’s Red Sandstone from England, hand crafted in Canada, and shipped to the U.S. for installation by Allegrone’s master craftsmen. The granite treads are Imperial Red Granite from India. These stones were both quarried and finished in India and then shipped to the U.S. The largest of the stone treads to lay was approximately 4’ x 9’, weighing 2,300 pounds.

This project had many layout complexities due to matching the new theoretical geometry of the outermost entry portal stones and the actual existing field conditions of the inner fluted pilasters, arches, and capitol clusters.

  • Client
    Cathedral Restoration Corp., Phil Galka
  • Architect
    Mesick Cohen Wilson Baker Architects
  • Location
    Pittsfield, MA
  • Delivery
    General Contract