The Duke Chapel will reopen Friday with the conclusion of the ceiling's inspection.
The Chapel closed Sept. 10 after a small portion of the ceiling fell in mid July. The ceiling's structure--particularly where the sliver fell--was inspected and stabilized.
The project was completed by Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc., a Chicago-based structural engineering firm. The firm is doing similar work at the Washington National Cathedral and the Washington Monument.
"This group is the best of the best for this kind of job and they've shown to be thorough and meticulous in their work," said Chapel Dean Luke Powery. "Making sure our space is in good shape is of significant importance to the Chapel and for the care for all those who step foot in the Chapel."
The company transported special lifts from Chicago, which are capable of being collapsed to a three-foot width and can expand to reach heights of 90 feet. The chapel ceiling reaches a height of 73 feet.
The team inspected the ceiling in portions of five to eight square feet at a time. Ray Walker, staff architect and project manager with Facilities Management, helped oversee the work. He said a final report on the condition of the ceiling will be received in three to four weeks, which will determine whether renovations need to be made.
All the chairs and pews were removed from the Chapel during the process, allowing for a thorough cleaning and resealing of the floors.
The process of moving chairs and pews back into the Chapel began Wednesday, and the building will open to visitors starting Friday.