What needs to be done
Building Code Inspector Rick Harmon of Barry Isett & Associates, Hazleton, examined the former English Congregational Church at 47 W. Ridge St., Lansford on Oct. 12 and Oct. 28.
Here's what Harmon found, and what he determined needs to be done to bring the aging church up to code:
The Oct. 12 inspection:
1. The exterior roof covering is loose and debris is falling from the roof near the adjacent structures.
2. The eaves of the roof are allowing rain water to enter the exterior walls of the structure causing mold and water damage to the walls and floors.
3. The brick extensions, located directly below the roof eaves, are allowing rain water to enter through the deteriorated grouting of the brick exterior walls, causing mold and water damage to the walls and floors.
4. The wood flooring is rotting in several areas due to neglect and lack of proper moisture control, creating a serious hazard to the extent of falling through the floor.
5. Paint is peeling away from the interior walls and ceilings on each floor level from the moisture present in the structure. This paint may be lead-based due to the age and condition of the structure.
6. The retaining wall located at the rear of the property is deteriorating, and sections of the wall have broken off.
7. The roof leaders are either not present, not properly attached to the gutter, damaged or clogged with debris which is allowing rain water to flow down the walls and penetrate the structure.
Requirements for compliance are:
1. An electric plan with panel and wiring detail is required.
2. An inspection is required, after removal of the interior membrane wall adjacent to steel column.
3. Repair all deteriorating grout on exterior brick extensions and interior brick support columns.
4. Replace the existing retaining wall located in the rear of the property.
The Oct. 28 inspection:
1. Large holes throughout the roof top.
2. Inadequate and undersized scuppers (drainpipes).
3. Roof eave water systems creating a hazardous condition to the adjacent dwellings.
4. Parapet walls and coping stones are deteriorating.
5. Concrete steeple and the support columns for the roof are deteriorating to the point where all the steel reinforcement is showing through the concrete, and the concrete can be peeled off by hand.
Harmon has asked the owners to "provide a roof and steeple plan, designed, signed and sealed by a licensed professional. No permits will be issued for work until plans have been submitted and reviewed. The contractor was informed not to proceed with any work in contact with the roof system and steeple," according to his report.