Gate of Heaven Church recognized by preservation alliance

BOSTON--The Boston Preservation Alliance has named South Boston’s Gate of Heaven Church a 2007 Preservation Achievement Award winner. The annual awards honor outstanding achievements in historic preservation and compatible new construction in Boston.

Gate of Heaven Church was completed in 1912. Its gothic, cathedral-style interior with marble altars, oak woodwork and large stained-glass windows made it one of the most elaborate churches in the early 20th century.

By 2004 however, the church had fallen into a state of considerable disrepair. Parishioners, school alumni and businesses in South Boston quickly pledged $3 million for its repair and restoration, and in the spring of 2005 the archdiocese approved the restoration of Gate of Heaven under the direction of the pastor, Father Robert E. Casey.

In June of 2005, a $6 million project began. The project involved the rebuilding and restoration of much of the original architecture, stained-glass windows and electrical systems. Project Manager David Sullivan and architect Wendall Kalsow, of McGinley Kalsow & Associates, LLP, directed the restoration project.

“The Boston Preservation Alliance is thrilled to present this award to Gate of Heaven Church for a remarkable restoration and a truly amazing group effort by parishioners and a large team of professionals. It shows what can be accomplished when people come together over something they deeply care about,” said Sarah D. Kelly, the organization’s executive director.

The Boston Preservation Alliance is a nonprofit organization that provides leadership, education, and advocacy to preserve Boston’s built heritage. The preservation awards call attention to property owners and developers of exceptional preservation-related projects and celebrate their positive impact on Boston’s built environment.