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Spectacular Utah temples: The work of a SMACNA contractor

Aug 08, 2014

Spectacular Utah temples: The work of a SMACNA contractor

Salt Lake Temple, Salt Lake City
Architect: GSBS Architects, Salt Lake City
Brigham City Temple, Brigham City
Architect: FFKR Architects, Salt Lake City
Contractor: All Metals Fabrication, Ogden, Utah

The Salt Lake Temple ground-breaking took place in 1853. Photo: Jacom Stephens.
The Salt Lake Temple ground-breaking took place in 1853. Photo: Jacom Stephens.

SMACNA contractor All Metals Fabrication (AMF) of Ogden, Utah, performed work on two stunningly beautiful temples for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS), including the church’s hallmark historic Salt Lake Temple in Salt Lake City.

Salt Lake Temple restoration
All Metals Fabrication disassembled and added copper and structural fabrication work on the landmark, century-old temple in downtown Salt Lake City. Begun in 1853, the 253,000-square-foot temple, built of quartz monzonite, took 40 years to build and was dedicated in 1893. The largest LDS temple, the Salt Lake Temple is part of Temple Square in downtown Salt Lake City, which features the Tabernacle, home of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and the church’s world headquarters.

Total floor area of the Salt Lake City Temple is 253,000 sq. ft. Photo: Jacom Stephens.
Total floor area of the Salt Lake City Temple is 253,000 sq. ft. Photo: Jacom Stephens.

The project was particularly challenging for AMF for several reasons. For starters, there were no architectural plans available because the existing rooftop and structure had been in place for more than a century, originally having been constructed between 1853 and 1893.

Additionally, all materials had to be hand carried through the inside of the functioning building, which made design and installation very complex. And when the project was completed, it had to look as pristine and preserved as it had before the restoration.

On the temple roof, AMF removed the existing roof and clay tiles, and fabricated and installed copper flashing, clips, slip sheets, sealants, and copper caps. Materials used included 16 ounce copper sheets, 20 ounce copper, 16 inch copper rivets, and caulking. Approximately 1,200 square feet of copper and membrane was used, plus ancillary stainless steel fasteners and caulking.

AMF, using skilled craftsmanship from Local 312, was successful in overcoming all of these challenges. The project finished on time and met the very exacting standards expected by the project oversight committee.

Dedicated in 2012, the Brigham City Temple is 36,000 sq. ft. Photo: Jacom Stephens.
Dedicated in 2012, the Brigham City Temple is 36,000 sq. ft. Photo: Jacom Stephens.

Brigham City Temple new construction
AMF was also approved to install new copper roofing, metal wall panels, and stainless steel flashing on the new Brigham City Temple some 60 miles north of Salt Lake City. The Brigham City Temple, like the Salt Lake Temple, utilized fantastic copper and stainless steel work to accent the building’s white stone facade.

The Brigham City Temple’s copper and stainless steel work accents the white stone. Photo: Jacom Stephens.
The Brigham City Temple’s copper and stainless steel work accents the white stone. Photo: Jacom Stephens.

Copper panels were fabricated from 32-ounce copper. Each panel was visually inspected by the contractor before being raised 60 feet in the air to be installed. Panels were expected to be free from defects including small kinks and fish mouths (openings where one layer overlaps another), which proved very challenging.

Materials used included 32 and 24 ounce copper, .050 stainless steel, composite panels, 24 gage stainless steel 2B, and 26 gage stainless steel 2B.

The metal work also required building information modeling (BIM) participation to meet a very tight construction schedule.

AMF has a reputation for providing impeccable quality and timely delivery for LDS temples across the country, including work in Washington, D.C., Idaho, California, and other western states.

Additional information:

(Rich Marker of All Metals Fabrication contributed to this article.)