Replacement Roof for Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs

The Central Roofing Company replaced the roof of the Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs on the University of Minnesota campus.

When it comes to safety, you can never do too much.

Founded in 1977, the Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs attracts students from all over the world. The more than 40-year-old building of the Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs had a problem in 2019. Leaky roof surfaces. At that point, Miller Dunwiddie and Central Roofing Company were hired to solve the problem.

Miller Dunwiddie architects were called in to assess the building envelope and investigate leaks. The team was asked to plan the replacement of the roofs, the sealing of the square, the skylights and the restoration of the masonry. They also provided construction management services for the implementation of the building envelope renovation to improve the Humphrey School of Public Affairs.

As the Miller Dunwiddie team moved forward, there was a competitive bidding process to attract a roof team. Central Roofing Company, a leading provider of commercial roofing projects, won the roof replacement project. The Minneapolis-based roofing company regularly works on roof maintenance at the University of Minnesota, where the Humphrey School of Public Affairs is located.

Find problems

“The roof on this structure was old and in poor condition,” says Jesse Wilcox, project manager at Central Roofing Company. “Obviously the roofs had been leaking for years. When we started work, many of the existing roof systems were unknown. Our team worked for almost three months to pick up the old roof and install new waterproof roof systems. “

After the old waterproofing materials and other decaying roofing materials were removed, the Central Roofing crew began installing three different roofing systems. For most of the project, they installed high quality asphalt roofs (BUR) from Johns Manville with the redundant layer system. This is the system Central Roofing installs on all new roofing projects at the University of Minnesota.

“We are a regular roofer for more than 150 buildings in three University of Minnesota locations,” says Wilcox. “This BUR has proven to be durable and traffic-resistant over time. That’s a major reason it was chosen for this replacement roof project. “

Three roof systems

Before installing the BUR, Central Roofing had to replace a waterproofing system that was more than 30 years old. In some places the landscaping had overloaded the system. A Hydrotech® system with hot liquid was installed in these areas.

A third roof system was installed at a location of the upper management office. A leak had occurred there in a walk-in base paver system. The Central Roofing crew removed the paving stones and plinths and then installed an 80 ml Sika® Sarnafil® PVC waterproofing membrane. New paving stones and PVC protection have been added to some small eyebrow roofs.

“This work was all done during a really rainy season,” says Wilcox. “This was a logistically difficult project. We ended up positioning large Potain® tower cranes in two different locations. This enabled us to achieve a sprawling facility with six different heights and more than 30 different locations. “

safety first

The active location of the campus and the size of the replacement roof project were challenges Central Roofing addressed. Rather than getting the job done with a minimum of safety requirements (stations and flag lines), the roofing company installed thousands of feet of hardwood barriers on all roof levels.

“When it comes to safety, you can never do too much,” says Wilcox. “The protection of the public and our crew is paramount in every project we carry out.”

Project completed

Now that the project is complete, Andie Noonan of Roof Spec Inc. is happy with the end result. Her specialist company deals with the design and performance of the building envelope, including exterior walls, roofs and waterproofing systems.

“We were hired to do quality assurance inspections,” says Noonan. “Central Roofing’s working caliber has been very good. Our companies have worked together on other projects and we are consistently impressed with the excellent work their team brings to a project. “

The Central Roofing Company is a nationally certified, privately owned, women-owned company based in Minneapolis, MN. Founded in 1929, the company employs more than 200 union workers. Central Roofing Company focuses on commercial roofing, field service and metal wall panel projects. More information is available at

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