Project Description / Overview

NYA provided structural engineering services for the evaluation, seismic retrofit and renovation of this 110-year-old, European-style cathedral in downtown Sacramento. The four general areas addressed were: seismic and structural issues, water intrusion, functional elements, and liturgical needs. NYA provided a comprehensive structural solution that protected the integrity of the sacred space, and allowed the renovation and reactivation of the feature dome element while improving the structural performance. The retrofit scheme considered deficiencies of the archaic construction materials and irregular mass configuration. The inherent strengths and positive structural contribution of the building components and the opportunities allowed by the programmatic renovations planned were also considered. The retrofit blends sensitivity with need and function while leaving no indication that the space has been altered structurally in any way.


Dome Support & Construction

NYA recreated the missing lower dome drum and created new supports. The scheme reintroduced the inner dome to the space while providing connection and protection of its structure and finishes. By improving anchorage and connection truss tie elements, the dome became part of the seismic force resisting system as well.


Concealed Concrete Frames

The frame addresses the deficiency in the lateral force resisting system, across the north to south axis. NYA removed portions of the existing masonry piers which provided concealed placement of the concrete frame. The new frame provides vertical and lateral support. On the side aisles, a delay was provided at the top to reduce the effects of shrinkage. Work was completed without disturbing any elements, including the dome. The presence of the new frames is undetectable and meets the needs of the retrofit standard.
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