George W. Gardner House: Roof Restoration

George W. Gardner House: Roof Restoration

The purpose of the project was to complete the second phase of a restoration of the exterior of the George W. Gardner House, a 113 year old a contributing resource in the Historic Hill District and listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The Gardner House has been the home of the GAI since 1965 and is open to the public to tour for free throughout the week and on weekends during special events. The GAI is a St. Paul, non-profit organization whose mission focuses on preserving and promoting the German language and culture in Minnesota.

In May 2012, the GAI commissioned the architectural firm Collaborative Design Group to conduct a condition assessment of the building’s exterior, focusing on the roof, masonry, and woodwork. As stated in the resulting report, the overall condition of most roof areas is considered poor, with many apparent deficiencies. Additionally, evidence of the roof’s failings can be observed inside the building. Several rooms have obvious water damage to the ceiling and walls.

The roofing contractors first removed the existing asphalt shingles and deteriorating underlayment of the sloped roof. They then installed a new underlayment, a Titanium PSU-30 snow and ice barrier, over the entire exposed roof. The asphalt shingles were replaced by historically authentic slate in the same color and design profile that was original to the building. Additionally, new copper valley and dormer flashings will be integrated into the new roof assembly.

The damage to the building interior during high rains has been halted. Both the architect and the roofing contractor are extremely confident that this project increased the lifespan of the roof for another 80 years.

Recipient: Germanic-American Institute
Funding Amount: $136,300

The Minnesota Historical and Cultural Grants Program has been made possible by the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund through the vote of Minnesotans on November 4, 2008. Administered by the Minnesota Historical Society.