Sullivan Hall still undergoing restoration process

Officials said work is on schedule, and should be completed in December.

Sullivan Hall has been under construction since the first week of September. The three-month project aims to restore the building, increasing its longevity.

Philadelphia’s Property Management Code “requires all building owners to maintain their buildings in good repair,” which also requires a review every five years of any building six or more stories in height or any building with any type of facade in excess of 60 feet in height.

“The Department of Licenses and Inspections writes a report and give a time frame to respond to the reports,” said Dozie Ibeh, assistant vice president of the Project Delivery Group at Temple.

Repairs include facade restoration, replacing damaged and loose stones on the building, repointing—the process of taking out old and eroded mortar and replacing it with new mortar—and sealing the windows, all done by Palmer Construction Company.

The west side of Sullivan Hall is now complete. The north side is about 90 percent complete, Ibeh said, but the entryway still needs work, which will be done during the weekends when the building is not in use. The east side will be completed in November and the whole project is predicted to be completed in the first week of December, he added.

Operations at Sullivan Hall have been largely undisturbed and work inside the building has continued as normal.

“We’re in good shape,” Bill Bergman, special assistant to the president said. “We never really closed that much.”

President Theobald’s State of the University address Oct. 8 was moved from its usual location of Sullivan Hall to Mitten Hall, but not as a result of the construction, Ibeh said.

“There was such a tremendous response of the folks who wanted to go [to the speech],” he said. “It was just a matter of capacity.”

The Board of Trustees meeting also changed locations. It is usually held on the third floor of Sullivan Hall in the Feinstein Lounge, but was instead held at the Wendy and Solomon Luo  Auditorium of the Medical Education and Research Building because of the Lewis Katz dedication of the School of Medicine Oct. 13.

The construction accomplishes several goals, Ibeh said. It restores the building, makes it safer by ensuring loose stones don’t fall and increases the longevity of the building by making it water tight and preventing deterioration.

“There’s also the aesthetic impact of a beautifully restored building,” Ibeh added. “With these old buildings, you want to re-point and maintain the building.”

Lian Parsons can be reached at or on Twitter @Lian_Parsons.

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