Another change here at Fort Frederica National Monument this year was new windows in the Visitors Center complex. These windows were installed in February, which is not a time of year you would do windows in Ohio, but was fine for coastal Georgia. Of course, they started the day before the African-American Festival. Those things always happen when they can cause the maximum amount of disruption.
For some reason, two different contractors were hired to do the windows. One contractor had the windows in the Visitors Center itself as well as replacing drywall in the theater. The other contractor had the windows in the restrooms, the Living History Library, and the Rangers’ Offices. Both contractors were here a couple of weeks. They worked really hard and did a good job, but everything was a mess while they worked.
When changes get made, especially government changes, some inexplicable things happen. For instance, the windows in the restrooms were clear. This would be fine if the windows were up high, but they are not. Visitors standing on the breezeway could look directly into the restrooms. Just what you want when you are entering a stall or washing your hands. Sam, one of our maintenance staff, was tasked with putting an adhesive covering on the windows to block the view. He did it cheerfully but it seems like it would make more sense to put in clouded windows to begin with.
Anther weird thing was replacing the windows on one of the walls of the Rangers’ Offices. I get that all the windows were replaced, but this wall had been built up into closet space inside the offices. There was plywood on the inside of the windows, covered by drywall. Why not just brick up the windows when they did that originally? Or why not brick up the windows now so that they wouldn’t have to be replaced in the future? The worst thing was that they installed the new windows from the outside of the building and didn’t latch the windows. The windows kept sliding open. Sam had to cut a hole in the wall, reach his hand in, latch the window, and then repair the hole.
The new windows look very nice, although not that much different from the old windows. The contractors both did a good job getting them in and then we all worked hard getting everything put back where it goes. The only thing left to do for a totally renovated Visitors Center is a new roof. Next year?