The Mullan Contracting Company “topped-off” the St. Mary's Antiochian Orthodox Church with the placement of a 5-ton (4.5 t), nearly 40-ft. (12 m) wide gold dome, as part of the addition and renovation of the religious institution, located at 909 Shawan Road in Hunt Valley, Mo. A tower crane carefully maneuvered the custom-designed piece in an orchestrated installation process that required the dome to remain level the entire time. The dome was manufactured by Architectural Fiberglass of Cleveland, Ohio.
The gold dome is the most visible aspect of the 5,800 sq. ft. addition to the Orthodox Church that was designed by Sanders Designs to reflect an ancient Byzantine style of architecture. The new structure is being manufactured of stone with the dome including towering spires and stained glass windows. The new addition was designed to blend seamlessly with the existing church, which has been in existence for more than twenty years.
“Among the key challenges of this installation was keeping the 10,000 pound dome perfectly level throughout the entire process,” said Joseph Rode, president of The Mullan Contracting Company. “In order to accomplish this, we needed to create a custom-designed rigging apparatus to accommodate the 40 foot wide dome and prevent the fiberglass piece from becoming egg-shaped. It took approximately one full day to prepare for the install operation and another full day to execute the strategy.”
Construction work on the Orthodox Church is expected to be completed this fall.
Founded in 1904 and headquartered in Lutherville, Md., The Mullan Contracting Company is a full-service construction management and general contracting firm specializing in the commercial office, retail, hospitality, healthcare and institutional industries.