SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Springfield’s iconic Campanile will be renovated to it’s original beauty.
From sunrise to sunset, year after year, decade after decade. Springfield’s historic Campanile has stood as a symbol of the city’s past, and a guide to it’s future.
For many, like project co-chair and WWLP founder William Putnam, it’s more than just a building. “I climbed that tower in 1938 when my father was the mayor. We hiked up there. The elevator didn’t work then, but the tower seemed to be in good shape,” said Putnam.
However, time has taken it’s toll. Moisture in the limestone has rusted the steel underneath, causing it to expand and the limestone to crack.
“Were lucky that things haven’t fallen off this tower. Our job is to arrest that rust, stop the deterioration and fix it so it won’t happen again,” said Michael Teller, of CBI Consulting, the architectural firm.
It’ll take about $20-million to complete the renovation. Private, state and federal funds will be utilized. When it’s done, the campanile will again be reopened; with restored bells, a working clock face, and an elevator.
The Campanile is only about a football field away from I-91 and thousands of travelers. It used to be Springfield’s tallest building until Tower Square was constructed, but it’s historical significance always remained.
Jonathan Porter is a Project Co-Chair & Grandson of former Springfield Mayor Denison. “The symbol that the Campanile is for the city is just as much that in 1913 as it is today. 100 years ago, and over the course of those 100 years, that campanile has seen the city of Springfield grow to what it is today.”
The Campanile project chairs all have ties to the city. Specifically, City Hall and the city’s former mayor’s. Much like the city itself, the Campanile is a structure at a crossroads.
Raising the funding is expected to take about three years. The restoration project will take about 2 years, from start to finish.