MADISON, Ind.(May 2004) The Broadway Fountain, one of Madison,
Ind.,s most endearing landmarks, will soon get the professional
attention it needs. The City of Madison Parks Department has commissioned
Karkadoulias Bronze Art, the Cincinnati-based company that recast
the fountain in bronze in the late 1970s, to remove all grime, pollutants,
incrustation and foreign material that have accumulated on the fountain
over the years and to make necessary repairs.
by Ruth Wright
Karkadoulias (center) talks with
Harold Lakeman (left) and Hank Bentz.
Not since the fountain was recast has it had any kind of professional
cleaning or repair, according to Dave Munier, parks department superintendent.
The department is responsible for routine maintenance of the fountain
but does not have the equipment, materials or know-how to do what
now needs to be done, he said. Karkadoulias Bronze Art was chosen
to do the work because of its expertise and past experience with the
Mercene Karkadoulias, whose late husband, Eleftherios, recast the
fountain nearly 25 years ago, visited Madison on April 22 with fountain
restoration expert Mark Sedecca.
It certainly is in deplorable condition, said Karkadoulias
after inspecting the fountain. This should have had maintenance
throughout the years.
In addition to wear and tear that have resulted from the fountains
outside location, mineral deposits from the hard water that circulates
through the fountain have been damaging, according to Karkadoulias.
She said a water softener will likely be needed to prevent re-occurrence.
Karkadoulias originally estimated that to get the fountain back in
shape would cost $79,885, which would include application of a protective
coating formulated by her company. That figure may be revised, however,
due to the fountains condition and the fact that a water softening
system will likely be installed.
by Ruth Wright
Mark Sedecca of Cincinnati inspects the fountain.
The parks department has agreed to pay Karkadoulias for the work
in installments, the first $25,000 of which will be paid this year.
Of that amount, $10,000 has been provided by River Valley Financial
Bank. The balance will be split evenly and paid over the next two
years or as funds become available. Plans are to establish an ongoing
maintenance program to avoid in the future this level of deterioration
and the resulting expense, according to Munier.
Following her visit to Madison, Karkadoulias told Munier that, due
to the weather in May, she will wait until June to begin work. She
could not say how long the project will take but said it will be worked
in among other projects the company is currently overseeing. Even
if I did this continuously it would take a long time. It wont
be done overnight, she said.
Most of the work will need to be done by hand, which will likely extend
the amount of time needed, Karkadoulias added.
No immediate fundraising for the fountain project is planned, but
it is possible according to Munier, that once area residents see that
the fountain is being repaired they will want to help.
Madisonians have rallied behind the fountain more than once in past
years, including in 1976 when its future looked bleak. Then, the originally
cast iron fountain that was first dedicated on Sept. 28, 1886, had
deteriorated to the point of near collapse. Not willing to lose the
fountain, area residents raised more than $100,000 to have the it
dismantled and taken to Cincinnati, where it was completely recast
in bronze. It was rededicated in a ceremony on Aug. 9, 1980.