Almost four years to the day after being totally destroyed by fire, the restored version of Ruffner Hall, Longwood University’s signature building, rose from the ashes and was rededicated. With origins dating back to 1839, Ruffner Hall serves as the main administration building and its image appears on the university’s logo and seal. Located in Farmville, VA, the 4,000-student Longwood University has a long history and rich heritage within the community.
More than 21,000 sq. ft. of PAC-CLAD 22 gauge steel 18” Tite-Loc Plus panels finished in Colonial Red were used in the restoration of the red brick, classical style Ruffner Hall.
The morning after the devastating fire, Longwood President Patricia Cormier vowed to rebuild Ruffner “to its former splendor.” The 83,000 sq. ft. building was reconstructed based on original details and drawings from the state archives under the direction of Kuntz & Associates, Architects, Alexandria, VA.
From the outside, the new Ruffner Hall looks like the identical twin of its historic namesake. That’s where the similarity ends. “Our mission was to create a fully modern building constructed of metal and concrete while maintaining the design integrity and dimensions based on the original wood framing,” said Fred Kuntz, principal of Kuntz & Associates. “Preserving the historic scale and character was absolutely essential.”
Several adjacent buildings already had standing seam roofs, according to Kuntz. The decision to utilize a Petersen system for Ruffner Hall was based on its ability to deliver “a quality roofing system with good life expectancy.”
Installation of the PAC-CLAD system was completed by Roof Systems of Virginia in Richmond. “The first priority was to get the new structure watertight so the interior work below could get underway,” said Ritchie Cruzen, vice president of operations. “After that, it was pretty much routine running of hips and valleys. The Petersen material was easy to work with, as always, and the job was straightforward. The only thing unusual about it was the fact that there was an online video camera on a nearby building that linked to a website where anyone could watch the progress. We hadn’t come across that before!”