In 2006, a sizable chunk of cast iron fell from the dome onto an observation deck which had attracted thousands of tourists each year. It was immediately closed to the public and a campaign was started to finance repairs. The legislature appropriated $16 million and donations poured in through the “Share the Care Colorado” fundraising effort.
Initially, we were engaged along with our comprehensive team of assembled artisans to address the severe structural deterioration of the dome. Our work was painstaking and detailed, requiring strict adherence to preservation standards. We brought in cast iron experts from Salt Lake City and disassembled the dome piece by piece. We removed the original copper, replaced it with new, and had 24-karat Colorado gold milled into leaf by Italian artisans. More than 140,000 gold leaf sheets were used in the repair, creating a sheath of gold on the dome one eight-thousandth of a millimeter thick.
Following the dome restoration, we replaced the slate and copper roof and restored the exterior granite façade and the Capitol’s windows. Over the past decade, we’ve restored the entire exterior of the people’s building, strengthening it for the next 100 years.