It won't be a new roof but it will help to keep the water out.  The Superior City Council has voted to approve spending $275,000 on what is being called a "temporary roof repair" on the Carnegie Library - historic building that's sat awaiting some form of future development for some time now.

And some city leaders aren't happy with the move.

The reality is that the historic building needs a new roof.  The present one has failed, and is letting the elements in - which damages the integrity of the entire building.  According to an article in the Superior Telegram [paywall], the current roof dates back to "1960 or 1970", but it also has structural issues; when the current roof was applied fifty or more years ago, it was done over the old roof.  In itself, that poses a problem because the city has been advised "that certain historic elements of the building could be damaged if the newer roof was removed".

The $275,000 in spending that was just approved by the city council will cover "the existing roof with [a] membrane [that] will seal it from the weather".  That membrane is being referred to by some councilor Mark Johnson as "another Band-Aid".

Superior City Councilor Brent Fennessey agreed - stating "[i]t kind of leaves us in the same spot.  We're still left with a building that needs a roof. Hopefully it will stay dry, but there's no guarantee....this isn't a final solution."

WIth the vote, Stack Brothers Mechanical will install a rubber roof membrane over the existing roof on the building.

Some other councilors questioned why they couldn't just install tarping over the roof instead of spending that amount of money on a membrane.  Superior Mayor Jim Paine explained:

"[It would] cost...$40,000 to $50,000 to tarp the building, which might not last more than a year or two...[making] the membrane...the most cost-effective option.  While the membrane is is the most flexible option for protecting the building and retaining the opportunity for historic restoration."

The original estimate in the amount of $525,000 from Stack Brothers also included other work to be performed, but those items have been put on hold for two reasons:  it exceeded the money that the city has in the budget for the work and it would have potentially compromised future historic integrity for the building.

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