ICRI 2013 Project Award Winner
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Award of Merit: Historic Category

Liberty Memorial Masonry Repairs
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Kansas City, Missouri

Submitted by Structural Engineering Associates


Liberty Memorial

Owner
Kansas City Parks
and Recreation
Kansas City, MO

Project Engineer/
Designer

Structural Engineering
Associates
Kansas City, MO

Susan Richards Johnson
Associates
Kansas City, MO

Repair Contractor
JE Dunn Construction
Kansas City, MO

Material Suppliers/
Manufacturers

Prosoco (Dickey Sales)
Leawood, KS

Sika Corporation
(Frieze & Associates
Paola, KS

Constructed in the early 1920s as a memorial for every American who died in World War I, the Liberty Memorial is the only National Memorial to WWI in the United States, located in Kansas City, MO. In 2006, the Liberty Memorial was declared a National Historic Landmark.

Masonry repairs at the Liberty Memorial complex were part of a larger project that included security and lighting upgrades, and security-sensitive landscaping. The total project cost was $3.9 million, with the masonry restoration costing $1.35 million. The investigative phase of the project started in 2010 and included an extensive observation of each stone on the 47-acre site, including those on the Memorial Tower and museums, several site walls and stairs, the Dedication Wall, and the newer entrance wall and fountain.

Limestone was the major type of stone, but it consisted of different types. Some of the original limestone was quarried on-site. The individual units consisted of rubble stone, finished stone, and carved stone of different varieties. Diligent effort was taken to select stone that would most accurately mimic the original stone and match the existing stone to remain in place. Stone variation required specific repair methods at different locations. Cleaning and sealing methods, as well as patching and stone Dutchmen mockups, were performed and approved prior to production work.

The project represents an extensive masonry restoration focusing on limestone. The repairs covered almost every kind of stone repair, including stone replacement, stone patching, stone Dutchmen, cleaning, sealing, stone consolidation, and waterproofing. Reconstruction of a rubble stone wall, stone pavers, and planter walls was also part of the restoration. In addition, new flashing was installed to address water infiltration that was promoting deterioration of the historic stone.

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