A 200-foot industrial crane towered over downtown Berryville at lunchtime today as renovations progress at the Barns of Rose Hill community arts complex. The huge lifting apparatus was used to install two 12,200 pound custom-designed compound beams that will support the barn’s aging roof structure.
Jason Marshall, a structural engineer with Painter-Lewis Engineering of Winchester, is responsible for designing the two massive devices that will support the theater catwalk as well as the roof. Marshall stood nearby watching as construction crews worked to maneuver the twelve tons of wood and steel in place inside the loft of the old barn.
The crane operator’s light touch on the controls of the boom allowed the structures to be slowly positioned into place. Progress during the job often appeared to be measured in “inches” rather than “feet”.
Marshall said that once in place, the new beams will provide most of the buildings structural support and make the aging barn roof much stiffer.
“We knew that we wanted to salvage and preserve the existing roof” Marshall said. “These supports will make the roof and the entire structure much stronger than it ever was in the past.”