Every one then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house upon the rock; and the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat upon that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And every one who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house upon the sand; and the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell; and great was the fall of it.—Matthew 7:24-27No storm damage. Shoddy construction, then?
Big problems at Oakland chancery
Lawsuit contemplated against designers, contractors
The following is from an October 3 letter to Oakland parishes from Very Reverend George Mockel published on the diocesan website:
To Parishes and Friends of the Diocese of Oakland,
This communication is to give you an update on the construction and design issues at the Cathedral Center that we first reported last fall.
These issues include water intrusion at various locations and excessive deflection or sagging of floor slabs in the Chancery, rectory and parking garage. The Cathedral of Christ the Light, which is a structurally separate building is generally unaffected. ("Generally unaffected"? That's reassuring.)
Last fall we closed the B1 level of the parking garage to minimize further deflection and relocated employee, event center and weekend Mass parking to the adjacent Kaiser Center parking garage. Since then, we have completed a number of interim repairs to assure the continued safety of Cathedral Center occupants and visitors, including modifying fire doors so they shut properly, clearing obstructed fire sprinkler heads, and making temporary leak and plumbing repairs. (There is often a normal settling of a building over time which requires occasional adjustments. Such signs, however, especially early on in the existence of a new building, can indicate a very serious problem with its foundation and/or the land upon which it sits. One can imagine in a geological zone prone to serious earthquakes—the Hayward Fault, part of the San Andreas Fault system, runs beneath the east shore of San Franciso Bay—that any construction problems could very well contribute to a catastrophic collapse of a building during an earthquake.)
At the same time we have taken these corrective measures, as part of our legal action against the designers and contractors, our legal team and expert consultants under the direction of the Cathedral board of directors have thoroughly documented the construction and design issues we have discovered. Because multiple companies and suppliers were involved in the design and construction, the research necessary to establish accountability for the issues we have identified is time-consuming and complex.
I want to assure you we are doing our utmost to address the construction issues thoroughly and expeditiously. The Diocese remains committed to legal action to ensure that the responsible parties pay for the necessary corrective work.
Sincerely Yours in Christ,Very Reverend George MockelVicar GeneralChair of the Catholic Cathedral Corporation of the East Bay