View from the Capitol Restoration Project

27 10 2010

Have you noticed the scaffolding on the Capitol?  Teams of talented men and women are working on the Capitol Restoration Project.

 

Ross Anders sent us these pictures of the Capital and they made us very curious! We printed out the pictures and asked some museum visitors if they had any questions to ask Ross. We came up with some questions of our own too, and Ross was kind enough to answer them for us…

ACM: What was your role in the restoration project?

Ross: I am the Project Manager for the entire project which includes the Dome, the Exterior Roof Features, and the House of Representatives Chamber Ceiling Repainting.  As Project Manager I managed both the design and construction process for the entire project working as a representative for the owner who is the State Preservation Board.

ACM: How did you become involved with the project?

Ross: My company was selected by the State Preservation Board to manage the Project.  The President of my company, Dave Stauch, was the Project Manager for the Capitol Restoration and Expansion completed in the 1990’s.

“How did you get up there?” -Keondrick, age 9

Ross: The trip to the top starts with a long climb up a spiral staircase to the top of the Dome where you can see windows.  Then, when you step outside, you begin a ladder climb straight up for about 40 feet.  Then another separate ladder climb of about 25 feet to get up to the star. It is 315 feet from the ground all the way up to the star!

“How does it feel on top of the Capitol? Is it scary?” -Camila, age 6

Ross: I was a little nervous the first time but now I’m used to the height and climb.  It’s not too scary at all because the scaffolding is very safe. Being at the top of the Capitol is really fun because you can see all around the City of Austin.  From UT to the lake and from the western hills all the way to the airport! It’s very beautiful on a clear day.

“When will the project be done?” -George, age 5

The House of Representatives Chamber Ceiling Repainting is completed and the furniture is getting moved back in soon.  The scaffold is scheduled to be removed from the Dome by December 18th, 2010.  Just before the holiday break!

Visitor also had questions about the Capitol Building.

How Tall is the Capital? – Katherine, age 10

308 feet

Who is holding the star? – Jacob, age 9

The Goddess of Liberty statue probably represents Athena, the Greek Goddess of wisdom, justice, arts, and crafts who was regarded as the protector of Athens in ancient times.

How did they get the star and statue on top of the capital? – Kierra, age 7

Weighing approximately 2,000 pounds the original statue was hoisted to the top of the capitol in four separate pieces in 1888. Workmen assembled the statue securing it with large iron screws. The original  statue is now in the Bob Bullock  Texas State History Museum, and a replica sits atop the Capitol.

Thank you Ross Anders for sharing this amazing experience with us and thank you to the visitors who asked such wonderful questions!

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