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Boston Public Library McKim Building Phase IIC

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Value: Size: Architect:
$14,000,000 37,580 SF Shepley Bulfinch Richardson and Abbott

After an award-winning performance on Phase II of the McKim Building Restoration, Lee Kennedy Co. was brought back to complete the next phase of work – a $14 million restoration of 37,580 additional square feet within the McKim Building.

Sargent Gallery – Lee Kennedy’s team reconditioned and restored wall murals by renowned artist John Singer Sargent that date back to 1895. The team also cleaned the Gallery’s dark sandstone stonework and installed skylights to create natural light and replace the existing fluorescent lighting.

Webster Room – The terrazzo floor and woodwork were restored.

Cheverus Room – The ceiling and walls were re-plastered and the display cabinets were refurbished.

Changing Exhibits Room – The plaster was repaired and a new marble floor was put down.

Abbey Room – Lee Kennedy Co.’s team fully restored murals painted in 1895 by American artist Edwin Austin Abbey depicting “The Quest of the Holy Grail.” The team also reconditioned the room’s woodwork – including the ceiling’s heavy ornamental rafters – and restored the existing marble floor.

Trustees Foyer & Conference Room – Decorative painting, woodwork and wood flooring were refurbished; architectural woodwork was refinished; new velvet wall covering was hung and new carpet, marble window stools and a media cabinet were installed.

In addition to the historical restoration work, this project also included renovations to electric fixtures throughout the space; installation of a new retrofitted elevator and MEP systems; and HVAC upgrades. Care was taken to accommodate the restricted space above the barrel vaulted ceiling of Bates Hall when performing HVAC work in the attic. A faster book conveyer system, which transports books from the historic McKim Building to the Johnson Building, was also installed. Finally, exterior windows were renovated throughout the building.