A piece of Mercer Island history will live on in the planned Mercer Island Center for the Arts (MICA).
Last year, the City Council approved the demolition and subdivision of the Island’s distinct Coval house. Parts were encouraged to be salvaged “given the unique nature of the structures, and the unprecedented quality of the building components and surrounding landscaping materials,” according to the city website.
Recently, Nickel Bros., specialists in moving houses, moved the 50,000-pound roof of the Coval pool house for reuse in the MICA building. MICA will be located on the site of the old recycling center and Bicentennial Park, near Mercerdale Park.
“This remarkable piece of art and craft has been saved through the efforts of Wes Giesbrecht, developer of the property. Giesbrecht is giving the structure to MICA to be the centerpiece of the grand public lobby,” said MICA President John Gordon Hill.
The roof was built of specially milled African bubinga wood in the Japanese truss style known as Shinzuka.
Contractor Foushee and Associates researched the engineering and construction of the roof, and their carpenters carefully removed the walls and windows of the pool house.
The roof was cut free and supported on steel I-beams. It was jacked up, placed on sliders, slowly moved out from the structure and then gradually lowered to ground level by jacking and removing cribbing.
Wheels were attached, and the 70-foot by 28-foot structure was moved to the position where it will be weatherproofed.
MICA is scheduled to open in early 2018. For more, go to www.mercerislandarts.org.