Rodney Square Building Restorations, Inca long, intermittent association

Rodney Square Building Restorations, Inc. is a Wilmington, Delaware company that does commercial building restoration. I first worked there in 1973 when it was a widow cleaning company owned by Michael Cibik, who is now a tax attorney in Philadelphia and Jim Heatherton, a Wilmington policeman. They had the contracts for all the buildings that faced Rodney Square in Wilmington which is how they settled on the name. A high school classmate and friend, Gabriel Fieni Jr, was the foreman and when he heard that I needed a part time job while I was in college he hired me. I worked there full time the summer after my freshman year. Sometime in the 1990s Gabe bought out Cibik and got away from window cleaning and into building envelope restoration, mostly sealant replacement (caulking) and waterproofing. In 2005 I went to work for Gabe as operations manager which was a pretty interesting job but not particularly fulfilling. I left in 2007 to go to Iraq for a better paying and even more interesting job but when I came back Gabe asked me to take over as President for a couple years. I'd never run a company with employees before so that was interesting too and I thrived until Gabe came back.

all the joints and surfaces . . .

. . . of an historic building

I took over as President of the company in November of 2009. By December all the work we had was done and everyone, except me and the bookkeeper, were laid off. I let her go in January so I was the only employee until I either ran out of money, gave up or found more work or it found me. Fortunately, both of those contingencies came about. An early and continuous element of the job was therefor, bidding jobs. To do that I made use of Google Sketchup (now Trimble Sketchup) to make 3D models of the buildings.

The work we did (and the company still does without me) is very unglamorous. Mostly it's cutting and ripping out silicon or polyurethane sealant from the joints around windows and between panels and putting new silicone or urethane back in. The great thing about the 3D model is being able to put all the different kinds of joints and all the building's surfaces on different layers. It's takes time to make the models but it's worth it. Adding up the quantities of all the different categories of work is easy with the model.

1 Commercial Place, Norfolk, VA

Blue jeaned boy Cleaning the windows in the old style, from a swing stage scaffold, on the Delaware Trust Building, Wilmington, Delaware - 1973