Exterior Walls Get a Facelift

Brick_Work

By Mike Smale, Current Staff

The high school is currently receiving some spring cleaning.

The exterior walls of the school are undergoing a masonry restoration project, according to Dave Ross, director of facilities.

The primary reason for this ongoing project is to stop and prevent further water infiltration into the walls. “If water gets into the structure it will expand and contract with the freeze-thaw cycle, which will cause cracking in the joints or even break the brick,” Ross said. Water leaking into the school also could lead to other concerns, such as mold.

A main issue with the restoration project involves the 1995 addition to the building, which was constructed using preset concrete panels.  “In between each of the panels is a caulk joint. Over time, this caulk loses its elasticity and shrinks, allowing water in between the panels again causing more damage with the freeze-thaw cycle,” Ross said.

Other problems, such as broken bricks, weathered walls, and missing electrical box caps, will be addressed and fixed with the project.

The restoration was initially set to begin in the fall, but this past year’s bad weather forced the restoration to be pushed back to this spring.

“I expect the project will continue through June,” Ross said.

(Image: Workers use a boom lift to address problems on the east exterior of WBHS.  Photograph by Mike Smale, Current Staff.)

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