Resuscitating a Necropolis - The Old Catholic Cemetery in Ponce

During the Fall and Spring Academic trimesters of 2010-11, the 19th century Antiguo Cementerio Católico of Ponce [1842-1918] built by the Government of Spain, was the topic of an Architectural Conservation Praxis course at ArqPoli. The site is presently known as the Panteón Nacional Baldorioty de Castro, and new landscaping, concrete structures and pavilions have been added to the original 19th century property. The historic structures and original layout of this important site, property of the Municipal Government of Ponce, has suffered neglect and uncontrolled demolition throughout different periods and its historic fabric needs urgent conservation in spite of being protected as a national monument. Students carried out historic research, documented the existing conditions of extant cemetery structures, and after sampling their historic fabric, carried out scientific analysis in the ArqPoli Architectural Conservation Lab in order to propose compatible repair methods and mixes.

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