ATLANTIC CITY — The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority approved spending up to $1.8 million to restore portions of the facade on Jim Whelan Boardwalk Hall.
The historic building's proximity to the ocean, with a constant barrage of salt and moisture, necessitated a multiphase project to ensure its structural integrity, CRDA officials said.
The masonry and restoration project is slated to begin in March along the Boardwalk-facing side of the 90-year old landmark. Officials anticipate the work will be completed by summer.
Boardwalk Hall will remain open during the construction.
The project is part of a multiphase effort in the authority's long-term facilities capital management plan. The time frame for the entire scope of the project to be completed is yet to be determined.
CRDA Board Chairman Robert Mulcahy said the "important project" would concentrate on the "worst area" that has been most severely impacted by the elements.
The project includes the facade pylon, any needed structural steel repair, stone masonry repointing and replacement, and crack repairs.
In addition to pulling out the limestone to examine steel and wood behind the stone, the two rusted-out light towers on top of Boardwalk Hall will be removed. The towers were installed in the 1980s, have no historic significance, are inoperable and are causing rust to run down onto the stone facade, officials said.
The last renovation of the outside of Boardwalk Hall was in 2010 and, prior to that, in the early 1980s.
Pullman SST, Inc., of Swedesboro, Gloucester County, was awarded a contract that allocates an amount not to exceed $1,863,000.
Boardwalk Hall, which opened in 1929, is listed on the National Historic Registry.
The CRDA assumed responsibility of Boardwalk Hall, West Hall and the Atlantic City Convention Center in 2011. At the time, Boardwalk Hall and West Hall were in need of "significant capital improvements to the building envelope," CRDA officials said. Since 2011, a full roof replacement, restroom renovations, electrical, plumbing and HVAC upgrades, and aesthetic work has been completed.
In other business, the CRDA approved as-needed contracts for plumbing ($750,000) and HVAC ($1.5 million) services from Falasca Mechanical and Herman Goldner Company for both Boardwalk Hall and the Atlantic City Convention Center. The two-year deals expire in September 2021.
The Board of Directors also extended an as-needed contract with Warriner's Construction, of Egg Harbor Township, until the end of 2020 for landscaping and materials for beautification projects in the Tourism District.