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Catholic Church of St. Ann

Established in the summer of 1978, the Catholic Church of St. Ann became the fifth largest Catholic Church in Cobb County. Cork-Howard was pleased to have won the opportunity to renovate the showpiece of the facility, its Narthex and Nave. This was the first major reconstruction since its inception.

The church's location near the busy East Cobb intersection of Johnsons Ferry Road and Lower Roswell Road created the need for sensitivity to the traffic and potential congestion that the construction work could impose on the already high-density traffic patterns of the area.

The church remained fully functional throughout construction, including services that were held in the on-site chapel and the pre-school that met daily throughout the week.

Cork-Howard was able to meet not only the budget and timeframe required of this project but also the needs of the staff and parishioners.

Renovation to the Catholic Church of St. Ann has been a remarkable journey for those who participated in the project. Seeing the church transform from a 70s-era facility that was designed for its function to a modern neighborhood cathedral and showcase was nothing short of wonderful.

Initial demolition and structural work to the building was a massive undertaking as the roofline and building shape were dramatically changed. A delay in the manufacture of the trusses and the addition of new steeples demanded a schedule that had to accommodate these issues while never losing track of the goal to be completed in time for dedication by the Parish Bishop.

Once completion of the exterior was secure, detailed work within the main sanctuary occurred. This included all new stone flooring, which replaced the outdated mauve carpeting. A raised floor was constructed at the dais to hold the massive imported marble platform where the priests would eventually hold mass.

A new marble font was installed along with arched beams and new pews. On the surrounding nave walls was a hand-painted faux wall treatment that was painstakingly detailed for the desired effect.

The church not only received structural and aesthetic changes but vibrant new landscaping, which dramatically increased the property's curb appeal.

Renovation and expansion of the Narthex and Nave involved erecting scaffolding throughout the entire interior of the structure to demolish the existing ceiling, then install a new sprinkler system, new lighting and a drop ceiling. Two existing stairways to the balcony had to be demolished and an elevator installed.

During the demolition and reconstruction phase of the interior existing structure, a crane was put in place to erect steel for the new expansion phase of the project.

Simultaneously, part of the roof top had to be removed to allow for the steel erection and to extend a new room over the expansion of the building. After the steel erection and new roof top were complete, two towers, one approximately 36 feet tall and the other 46 feet tall, were built on top of the new.

Following the steel and roof work, a mobile crane was brought in to erect a 40-foot and 45-foot steeple atop each new tower structure, giving each tower a 75 and 90 foot reach atop the roof.

Finally, a scaffold system was then erected around the entire outside perimeter of the building to add the final touches of stone and EFIS to the outside walls.

While the interior and exterior renovation and expansion were in progress, there was also site work, trenching, piping and concrete pours taking place onsite as well. Cork-Howard maintained a commitment to ensure that the traffic patterns entering and exiting the church were manageable and easy to maneuver at all times.

The interior renovation required scaffolding to be erected, creating in a sense a false floor or mezzanine area so that the high-ceiling work, which included all new electric and sprinkler systems, could be installed, as well as any work to the ceiling itself. Once the upper portion of the nave had been completed, the scaffolding was removed and work could begin on the lower level of the building.

There were several innovative approaches utilized during the interior renovation.

The two primary techniques were the creation of a "false" floor and the use of trusses to set the beams in the ceiling.

Critical to this project was the installation of the new exterior beams that were required for the new and dramatic roofline of the church. Wood trusses were utilized to help support the exterior beams while permanent steel beams were meticulously seated and anchored in place.

Raising the pitch and height of the ceiling also required a novel approach to the best manner in which to manage the electrical and ceiling work at the 68-foot height that was created.

A "false" floor or landing was created by utilizing a series of scaffolds. These scaffolds were securely put in place and all "high-ceiling" work was completed.

Once everything, including any finishes, was finalized, the scaffolding was removed and the lower half of the facility was then attended to and finished.

Founded in 1995, Cork-Howard has successfully grown in the high-end interiors market, specializing in build-out and renovation; projects with difficult and compressed schedules; and large multi-floor construction, www.corkhoward.com.

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Religious Product News