FORT McCOY, Wis. -- Major renovations are under way in the Protestant Chapel, building 2672, said Garrison Chaplain (Col.) Steven Colwell.

Arteaga Construction of Milwaukee is the general contractor for the project, which was detailed as part of the installation's master plan. Included in the project is installing modern forced air heating/cooling equipment and insulation, upgrading the restroom areas, adding chairs to replace the pews, and new carpeting. Colwell said the pews were not compatible with the new carpeting so they were removed and donated to a civilian church, which saved those costs.

Chapel 10, building 1759, also will be updated with new carpeting and new chairs. A new roof was installed last fall.

The work is the first major reconstruction project of the chapels since 2002. That project included new awnings, creating break rooms and painting the chancel in Chapel 1.

"This work will serve as a bridge between now and a new chapel," Colwell said. "We have the paperwork in to build a new chapel."

Originally, the chapels on post, including Chapel 1 and Chapel 10, were built as temporary facilities designed to last for five to 10 years during World War II, Colwell said. As with the rest of the cantonment area buildings, the facilities were built to standards far above what was required and have lasted much longer than planned. The original heating system in Chapel 1, for example, was powered by coal. The most recent system was a boiler that provided steam heat, and which couldn't always be well regulated.

"After stripping the inside, you can see there isn't any or very much insulation in the walls or ceilings," Colwell said. "Truly, these were meant to be temporary buildings."

Chapel 1 also will include a modern projection/video system, which will allow the chapel to be adapted to support denominations in addition to Protestant. Work, including the restroom renovations, also will bring the renovated facility into compliance with the American with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Later this year, Chapel 10 also will receive renovations including a new heating/cooling system, insulation and ADA-compliant restrooms.

For more information, call 608-388-3528.

Page last updated Tue January 12th, 2010 at 10:12