Riverside’s famous bell tower is in need of repair.
This 105-year-old concrete tower has benefited the community with hourly bell tolls and hymns daily. It has created an environment of reassurance and continuity through its own unique aesthetics.
Completed in December 1913, the tower inspired similar structures throughout the state, including the famous California tower and buildings erected for the 1915 Panama-California Exposition in San Diego’s Balboa Park. Designed by Myron Hunt and engineered by Henry L.A. Jekel in 1910-11, the tower has long been a prominent symbol of Riverside and is arguably the first example of Spanish Baroque Revival architecture in the United States.
However, a century of wind, rain, sun and smog has damaged many of the unique decorative elements.
Church leaders became aware of the tower’s needs and retained Heritage Architecture and Planning of San Diego to develop a restoration plan. After painstaking analysis, Spectra Company of Pomona was chosen to complete the work. The cost will be over $400,000. The funds will pay for replacing some broken elements and repairing others. Also we will re-grout the gaps between the decorative elements and seal the surface of the concrete to avoid further damage and we would like to improve the seismic stability of the tower.
In 1986, memorial bells were added by Don and Beth Miller to honor the short life of their son, Scott, who died from leukemia at the age of 8.
“Frankly, this tower is a living reminder to me of many things: my son, the uniqueness of Riverside and its proud history.“
Your generous donation will help to reach our goal.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help with some of the funding here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/savethebelltower