Parking and sidewalks near the old Capitol building in downtown Olympia will be affected by inspection crews this week.
The sandstone building that now houses the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction at the corner of Legion Way and Washington Street requires continued maintenance, according to Jim Erskine, spokesperson for the Department of Enterprise Services.
This week’s work is a prelude to a $3 million project this spring that will repair leaks that are causing interior damage, Erskine said in a news release.
The spring project includes:
▪ Rehabilitating original wood windows
▪ Cleaning, caulking, repairing and repointing the sandstone exterior
▪ Replacing failed skylights
▪ Completing gutter, roof, flashing and drainage work begun last year.
“The issue is to preserve the historic integrity of the building and keep the building operating,” OSPI spokeswoman Kristen Jaudon said.
The visual inspection will take place Wednesday and Thursday, and will include workers on hydraulic lifts that will extend over sidewalk areas at times. Pedestrians will be guided by cones, safety tape and inspection workers.
Looking ahead to spring, repairing the skylights will be a welcome improvement for staff, Jaudon said.
“They’ve been covered for so long, areas have less light,” she said.
Jaudon likes to take out-of-town visitors to the building, which was completed in 1892 and served as the state Capitol from 1905 to 1928.
“It’s easily one of the most beautiful buildings in the city,” she said. “I love that this building has been maintained for as long as it has been.”