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Preservation Awareness Month

Throughout the month of May, Echem Consultants highlighted the team’s favorite historic structures in an effort to bring awareness to the importance of preservation.

As material scientists with a passion for the preservation of the built environment, we strive to extend the service life of our clients’ structures.  We utilize cutting edge technology, with a knowledge of historic construction techniques and materials, to assess the long-term performance of existing, historic and new structures into the future.  To determine future impacts, we assess current and future loads which may influenced and cause advanced material degradation.  We are proud to have worked on numerous landmarks over the past two decades. 

Although visiting most historic landmarks are limited during this time of COVID-19, organizations like The Association for Preservation Technology International (APT) and National Trust for Historic Preservation are providing ways to learn about historic structures and landmarks from afar.

In celebration of Preservation Month, Echem Consultants highlighted their employee’s favorite historic structures to help bring awareness to the cause while being able to showcase a few historic landmarks remotely. Below are a few excerpts from the series:

Mid-Hudson Bridge, Poughkeepsie, NY

I’ve been fortunate enough to have seen many historical structures in my life so far. However, it’s the structures I am able to enjoy daily that bring me the most joy. The Franklin D Roosevelt Mid Hudson Bridge includes a pedestrian walkway leading to Franny Reese State Park that has a hiking trail with a beautiful lookout point of the City of Poughkeepsie where I live.

The bridge, originally opened in the 1930s, has helped connect the Hudson Valley to its’ surrounding communities. On the weekends, my husband and I love to take morning walks or bike rides over the bridge with a cup of coffee to go.

When structures like this can be preserved and enjoyed in the current time, it helps me reflect and honor the past. It gives me hope especially during uncertain times that people can endure and get through

Cassandra Yzaguirre, Marketing & Graphics

Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, NY

The Vizcaya Museum and Gardens is significant to me because it was the first historical structure I had the chance to work on since joining Echem. I learned a lot about the structure and Echem’s preservation services during this time. Being able to work on a structure such as Vizcaya, learning about its’ history, how it was built, and where the materials came from was an eye-opening experience.

For me, learning about the structure’s background and being able to correlate that to the work we performed gave me great perspective. It reinforced my understanding of how important Echem’s work is when helping to preserve historical buildings in relation to their background.

Joseph Mandia, Operations

Brooklyn Bridge, New York, NY

Ever since I was a child visiting NYC, I have been enamored with the Brooklyn Bridge. Soaring above the east river and at its construction towering above the buildings on each end, the bridge commands a presence that I personally feel has never been truly replicated by any other bridge in NYC.

Officially opening in 1883 after 13 years of construction, marred with controversy and death, including the death of the original designer and builder, John A. Roebling. The bridge was designed with a Gothic Revival style to closely resemble a church. The towers are reminiscent of a gothic revival church, shooting high and broken up by buttresses with pointed archways. It was designed by Roebling, to capture the same monumentality that so many gothic revival churches of the era had done and continue to today. It was designed to be a monument to the city, introducing modern technology as the first suspension bridge in NYC and claiming the title of the longest suspension bridge for 20 years.

Not only special because of the design, the bridge is also special due to the carefully chosen materials. The limestone and cement are sourced from Rosendale, N.Y., a neighboring town to where I live. The granite for the tower was brought from the Blue Hill Peninsula in Maine, where I have spent nearly every summer of my life. I have spent time both where the kilns are that made the cement and the wandered the quarry’s where the granite was sourced. Once this was discovered, I feel even more in love with the bridge and what it meant to me.

Preserving historic structures such as the Brooklyn Bridge, that capture our hearts and minds, is important. They stand as practical and usable monuments to our history.

Felice Bernabo, Operations

About Echem Consultants:

Echem Consultants is a material science consultancy whose primary focus is understanding material durability of the built environment. Through their Life 52® assessment approach [Laboratory, Inspection, Field Services, Engineered Design], they can assist architects, engineers, and structure owners with long-term durability planning and predictive service life modeling for critical infrastructure and historic landmarks.

For more information, please contact Echem at 845-215-4370.

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