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The Collapse

Shoring Up The SanctuaryStripping off the old Roof

For over 40 years, The Santa Anita Church provided a place of worship, a beautiful site for thousands of weddings, and a welcoming chapel for generations of Barnhart students. Then in March of 2001, a serious split began to form in one of the large beams that supports the roof. The sanctuary was immediately closed, and large timbers were installed to shore up the building against the threat of imminent collapse.

When the insurance company refused to pay for the repairs, The Santa Anita Church faced a major decision: to wait until litigation forced the insurer to honor the policy, knowing that it would take three to five years; or to raise the money to restore the sanctuary without waiting for the outcome of the lawsuit.

Construction of the church in 1959 cost $300,000. Prices have risen significantly since then. Even more important are the changes in building codes. It was not just a matter of replacing some beams; the entire structure must be brought up to current standards. The repairs were estimated to cost over $1,000,000.

Crane used to Shore up the Beams