Northeastern (46th Annual) and North-Central (45th Annual) Joint Meeting (20–22 March 2011)

Paper No. 7
Presentation Time: 9:30 AM


SHOTWELL, L. Brad, Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, 9655 Sweet Valley Drive, Suite 3, Cleveland, OH 44125,

Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial is a monument designed in the form of a Doric column. It is constructed on a concrete foundation, with the exterior face of the shaft clad with ashlar cut, Milford Pink granite set against an unreinforced concrete backup. It was opened to the public in June 1915. Repairs have been made over time, with the last major effort in the 1980s.

As part of an exterior condition assessment to evaluate observed deterioration, field and laboratory petrographic studies on in-place concrete were begun in 2006. The studies were completed prior to development of a scope of work for the comprehensive repair of the memorial. The field and laboratory studies included examination of the structural concrete of the plaza that surrounds the monument, and the structural concrete supporting the granite cladding of the soffit, fascia, and observation level, from which a granite fascia panel fragment had previously broken free and fallen.

Evidence of significant previous deterioration and repairs was visible on the underside of the structural slab that supports the plaza. The steel reinforced concrete beams that support the structural slab exhibited significant freeze-thaw induced cracking, and significant leaching of soluble concrete components had occurred. The unusual presence of aggregate popouts on the bottom surface of the structural slab indicated that the entire thickness of the slab has locally been critically saturated while exposed to cyclic freezing and thawing.

The concrete behind the granite fascia panel and soffit at the observation deck level of the memorial was assessed close-up from a swing stage and was found to have completely disintegrated locally due to freeze-thaw distress. The interlocking nature of the cast in place concrete and the dovetail slots in the granite that forms the underside of the soffit make replacement of this concrete essential to the long-term durability of the monument.

Although air-entrained, the mortar bed beneath the granite paved walkway on the observation deck that had been installed during the 1980s repair campaign had also completely disintegrated due to freeze-thaw distress in the areas adjacent to non-functioning drains.