Marines aid museum renovation initiative

| May 16, 2014 | 0 Comments
Photo courtesy Tropic Lightning Museum Leathernecks from Marine Corps Base Hawaii rip up the old sidewalk fronting the Tropic Lightning Museum as part of a two-week renovation project.

Photo courtesy Tropic Lightning Museum
Leathernecks from Marine Corps Base Hawaii rip up the old sidewalk fronting the Tropic Lightning Museum as part of a two-week renovation project.

 

Damaged sidewalks redone
Serena Valdez
Contributing Writer
SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — Marines from the Combat Logistics Battalion, Marine Corps Base Hawaii, completed a two-week renovation project last week at Schofield Barracks’ Tropic Lightning Museum.

In cooperation with the Directorate of Public Works (DPW), U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii, the project included replacing old, damaged sidewalk near the museum’s entrance and rebuilding the porch.

Planning for the project started in February, but work didn’t start until April 21.

The Marines were in charge of demolition, drafting the design and performing the labor for the entire project.

1st Lt. Michael Mader, commander of Combat Engineer Platoon, Eng. Services Company, Cbt. Logistics Battalion-3, MCBH, and officer in charge of the project, said the renovations were about standard compared to most projects the platoon undergoes; however, the more difficult part was laying the concrete.

“Concrete is very unforgiving. Once it sets, it sets, and you can’t make any changes,” he said.

The Marines widened the sidewalk about 6 inches, allowing for better traffic flow to and from the museum. They also tinted the concrete to match the rest of the property’s sidewalk, maintaining the historic-looking element to the space, said Kathleen Ramsden, the museum’s curator.

While the platoon has some experienced members, there are also inexperienced Marines, which, for Mader, meant the project was a perfect learning opportunity for those Marines who weren’t as skilled, he said.

Material funding for the $8,300 project came from DPW’s annual work plans where they approve and fund two projects, including Tropic Lightning Museum’s renovations.

If the Marines hadn’t agreed to volunteer for the project, material costs and hiring contractors for the labor could have amounted to about $30,000, said Steve Lai, troupe construction coordinator for DPW.

“Looking at it that way, I think we got a really good deal with this project. I’m really glad (the Marines) were able to come out and work with us,” Lai said. “The museum gets several visitors a day, and it just makes a better impression when the facility looks nice.”

Now that the project is finished, some last-minute touch-ups will be made to the museum’s property, including replacing broken plastic boxes and hydroseeding for grass that got damaged during the renovation. The museum is also slated for painting, said Ramsden.

“The Marines did a phenomenal job. It was amazing how they came in, hitting the ground running, and were able to accomplish a lot in a short amount of time,” she said. “For us at the museum, it certainly does enhance the face of the museum, and we certainly do appreciate their willingness to come out and do the work.”

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Category: Community, Community Relations

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