Newark City Hall
Newark City Hall was designed by John H. and Wilson C. Ely Architects with the firm of Mowbray and Uffinger, and completed in 1906. The Renaissance Revival building is four stories in height and rectangular in plan, and is capped by a central dome.
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The City of Newark initially engaged Farewell Mills Gatsch Architects to prepare a preservation plan for city hall. The plan outlined a phased program of restoration, rehabilitation, and adaptive use that would allow the striking architectural character of the building to be restored and the functionality of the building to be improved.
The building’s exterior restoration, which represented the first phase of work, included repair of the dome, roof, and building drainage system, which had suffered numerous failures resulting in significant damage to interior finishes. In addition, windows throughout the building were in very poor condition, and their sashes needed to be replaced in order to restore operability and improve the work environment. Inappropriate replacement doors were removed and replaced with architecturally compatible wood doors. Cleaning and restoration of the granite façade, which had suffered significant failures and widespread environmental staining, was also critical to restoring the image of the building as a monument to the ideals of the City Beautiful movement.
The stone restoration included cleaning, repointing, and repair of various elements, particularly at the principal cornice, where major areas of unsound stone were removed and replaced with carved “dutchmen.” Finally, the monumental stair at the main entrance, found to be structurally unsound, was rebuilt in order to prevent continued water damage and ensure the safety of those using the stairs and the accessible entrance beneath them. The ornamental bronze light fixtures capped by eagles were refinished and installed on the rebuilt stone piers flanking the stairway.
Formal name of project: Newark City Hall
Location: Newark, New Jersey
Gross square footage: 176,557 sq.f t.
Completion Date: December, 2006
Total construction cost: $18 million
Owner: City of Newark, New Jersey
Farewell Mills Gatsch Architects, LLC,
200 Forrestal Road, Princeton, NJ 08540
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