Union College Rathskeller Renovation
Sano-Rubin was selected as general contractor for College’s Rathskellar renovation project, a 3,700 sf space which has a rich and meaningful history for generations of Union students. The Rathskeller was in need of updating but required significant renovation due to over 5 feet of water flooding the basement space in 2014. Renovations were complicated by active steam and electrical systems feeding adjacent campus buildings which ran through the space and needed to remain functional during one of the coldest winters in history when the majority of work took place. The Rathskeller’s existing flood-damaged systems also had to be replaced and required intense coordination to keep all systems functioning.
Unforeseen conditions were discovered soon after the project start that impacted the renovation. The existing slab was determined to be unsuitable for the new porcelain tile. This required removal of the original ground-water prevention assembly that included the entire concrete slab, a layer of asphalt roofing beneath it, and a slab layer below that. This additional work resulted in the hand removal of over 3,500 c.f. of concrete and clay and installation of the same amount in new drainage stone and concrete slab to prevent active ground water penetration.
The finished Rathskeller includes new stainless steel commercial kitchen with waterfall edged granite countertops, dark maple millwork, and built-in upholstered banquettes. To maintain some of the space’s history, an original 1960’s era mural was preserved and original table with carved names was refinished and included. The transformed Rathskeller has exceeded the College’s expectations and will continue to serve as a gathering space for the students.