Brightened limestone on a college campus

Photos by Darcy Boyle

College campuses nationwide hold a bevy of aging masonry buildings, and a huge opportunity for restoration contractors. Kansas University in Lawrence (PROSOCO's headquarters) is no exception. 

Budig Hall is the latest historic masonry building on KU's campus to undergo a multi-faceted restoration, including the cleaning of its exterior facade of Indiana limestone.

Mike Dickey, Dickey Sales, looks up close at the stain patterns on Budig Hall in Lawrence, Kansas
Mike Dickey, Dickey Sales, looks up close at the stain patterns on Budig Hall in Lawrence, Kansas.

Mid-Continental Restoration earned the job and work began in 2023 on this historic building with an infamous history -- at least locally. Originally built in 1927 and called Hoch Auditorium, the building's arena is where the KU men's basketball team played its home games until 1955, when Allen Fieldhouse opened.

The building unfortunately caught fire during a lightning storm in 1991, destroying the auditorium and stage.

Recently, this beautiful mainstay of KU's campus began to show biological staining on its limestone exterior. As part of the test panel process to determine the best system of products to clean the building, veteran PROSOCO rep Mike Dickey of Dickey Sales visited the site multiple times and consulted with the project team. In fall of 2023, Mid-Continental crews were grinding out and repointing the mortar. A protective treatment is also specified once the cleaning is complete. The project will likely go through 2024.

Budig Hall in Lawrence, Kansas
Budig Hall in Lawrence, Kansas, was once Hoch Auditorium, where the KU basketball team played its home games until Allen Fieldhouse opened in 1955. A lightning strike started a fire in the building in 1991 and its limestone facade and lobby were the only components spared.

The winning combination? PROSOCO's ReKlaim Cleaner, Limestone & Masonry Afterwash, followed by a 1:1 dilution ratio of ReVeal.

To clean the repointed mortar joints, crews applied Sure Klean 600. Mid-Continental Foreman Cody Clayton let us onto the site during one application of Sure Klean 600 on the mortar joints.

Finally, the building will be protected with Natural Stone Treatment in 2024 once completely cleaned. 


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