Fordham University Clocks

New York, NY

Vertical Access was retained by Structure Tone, Inc. to assist with the restoration of tower clocks on two buildings on Fordham University’s Rose Hill campus. VA worked with the Verdin Company to remove the clock hands and reinstall them after restoration, and to install new gear boxes. VA documented each step of the equipment removal and reinstallation using digital still photography.

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Building description

Keating Hall is a Collegiate Gothic style academic building with a square bell tower rising from an enclosed interior courtyard. It is located at the geographic center of campus on Edwards Parade, the university’s ceremonial lawn. Completed in 1936, it houses Deans’ offices, the WFUV radio station, classrooms and lecture halls, and a chapel. The Keating Hall clock tower’s four monumental clock faces are installed over a multistory open belfry. Martyrs’ Court is a four-story dormitory complex built in 1951 and consisting of three long, narrow wings. A hipped-roof stair tower over the building’s main entrance contains a single clockface oriented towards Martyrs’ Lawn to the south.


  • Safely remove and reinstall clock hands and gear boxes using specialized tools.
  • Minimize disruption to building occupants and pedestrians on an active university campus.


  • Used Industrial Rope Access to allow a technician hands-on access to clock hands and gear boxes. This access approach allowed work to take place without disrupting student and staff access to campus buildings and without the construction of costly scaffolding.
  • Worked closely with on-site representatives of The Verdin Company to safely loosen corroded clock hand connections.

Building owner

  • Fordham University

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