Working directly for the University, the coordinated restoration of the plaza was essential to the University. The assessment report and construction documents were completed to accommodate the restricted window for completion.


  • Approximately 5,000 squarefoot elevated plaza restoration extending up to 60 feet above grade
  • Elevated platform extends up to 60 feet above grade
  • The existing COR-TEN steel framing required high performance coating system
  • High performance coating for steel construction
  • Architectural features integrated into the structure

Gumberg Library is in the heart of Duquesne University’s campus in downtown Pittsburgh. The main entrance of the library features a plaza that connects the street level along Locust Street to the fourth floor of the library. Continued deterioration of the plaza led the University to investigate repair options for the plaza structure. A comprehensive report was developed for the University to assess the overall condition and functionality of the existing plaza. Various repair options and costs were provided along with architectural and geotechnical considerations. The University decided to proceed with a complete renovation and partial expansion of the plaza. Repairs for the plaza included reinforcing of existing steel columns and beams, concrete foundation stabilization, and cleaning and painting of the existing COR-TEN steel. New work involved the placement of a new concrete retaining wall as well as new reinforced concrete slab construction. Architectural features include new railings and benches as well as a new concrete seat wall. Since the construction schedule was limited to 13 weeks during the University’s summer break, timely responses to contractor questions as unforeseen conditions were essential to the completing on schedule and within budget. This required performing regular site observations and attended progress meetings to ensure proper construction of the work detailed in the design documents. This close communication with the contractor also allowed for the design adjustments to the repairs, leading to successful completion of this challenging project.

Completed Plaza from Street Level Slab Forming and Reinforcement Placement Demolished Slab and Beam Repairs Repaired Framing and Shotcreted Hillside Completed Plaza from Student Union Building

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