By Belle Hatfield
Since the first conceptual drawings were unveiled in the late 1980s, the copper clad roof was to be a signature element of Yarmouth’s town hall. Instead, over the last 20 years it appears to have been a costly mistake.
Since soon after the town hall opened, the roof has leaked and nothing, it seems, short of ripping it off and starting from scratch, is going to fix the leaking.
A consultant hired to evaluate remedies has recommended the installation of a lined gutter and scupper system with an asphalt shingled roof. The cost estimate is within the $200,000 council approved in its 2012-13 capital budget.
After discussing the findings with the town’s director of operations, David Ernst, Yarmouth town council accepted the recommendations and has directed the town’s engineer to proceed to tender.
The leaking began not long after the building at 400 Main St. was opened in 1993. Various repairs have been done to fix the problem, including caps over the copper roof panel seams, baffles in the ridge vents, membranes in roof valleys and electric heat tracer cables to keep water from freezing.
But all to no avail. (Click here to read a story about the leaks from October 2011)
In a report to council in July, Ernst wrote that despite exhaustive efforts, repairs “have either not lasted or another panel seam has opened.”
It seems that as soon as one leak source is traced and repaired, water finds another way into the building.