Saint Mary's Cathedral in San Francisco


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Title: Saint Mary's Cathedral in San Francisco

Author(s): Leonard F. Robinson

Publication: Special Publication

Volume: 28


Appears on pages(s): 185-192

Keywords: arches; concrete construction; falsework; formwork (constructoin); hyperbolic parabolic shells; models; precast concrete; reinforced concrete; religious buildings; shells (structural forms); shotcrete; structural design

Date: 1/1/1971

The design and construction of the shell roof of the Saint Mary's Cathedral in Sann Francisco is described. The roof consists of eight hyerpbolic paraboloid shells approximately 50 ft wide and 130 ft high, enclosing the prinicpal space which is some 190 ft high and 205 ft square in plan. The shell roof was built using shotcrete deposited on precast concrete ribbed forms, a system of construction devised for the project by Pier Luigi Nervi. Extensive model testing and computer analyses were performed in the course of design.