The City of Saint Paul has been awarded a Minnesota Historical Society Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund Grant for the restoration of the pool and sculpture at Cochran Park. The proposed work includes removal and replacement of pool tiles and restoration of the ornamental railing surrounding the pool. Funding from the Ramsey Hill Association provides a match to the MNHS grant. There are other park improvements being considered separately from the restoration of the pool and sculpture project. Those project will be designed and implemented when funding is available.

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This project has been financed in part with funds provided by the State of Minnesota from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund through the Minnesota Historical Society.

Project Updates

March 25, 2024

As weather permits, the restored geese will be reinstalled and the fountain started up for the season.

September 26, 2023

Restoration of the tiled fountain is complete, but restoration of the geese remains to be completed. We anticipate the geese restoration will be complete in early October, but are planning to wait until spring to install them when we startup the fountain. The construction fence will be removed when the fountain is operational in spring 2024.

May 30, 2023

Tiles have been removed from the fountain basin and is being prepared for new tiles. We anticipate new tiles will be installed in the next couple weeks and be complete by the end of June. The ornamental railing is currently being painted and will be reinstalled in the next couple weeks.

May 15, 2023

A contract has been issued to contractor for the restoration of the basin and work is beginning. Over the weekend, a protective box was placed over the Paul Manship sculpture which will allow demolition (removal of the tiles) to take place. Additional restoration activities will be taking place over the next few weeks. A more thorough schedule will be posted soon.

April 12, 2023

We are in the process of awarding contracts to a contractor for the restoration of the tiled pool and one to a contractor for the restoration of the ornamental railing. We anticipate the contractors will begin their work as soon as practical when the contracts are issued.

March 21, 2023

Our vendor that was selected for Technical direction, construction management, and public art conservator responsibilities, has been working on gathering background information which will lead to development of plans and specs for the restoration of the fountain. We anticipate being ready to solicit quotes for the restoration work in the next couple weeks with restoration to follow shortly thereafter.

January 5, 2023

We have advertised an RFP to select a vendor for a Professional Services Agreement to provide Technical direction, construction management, and public art conservator responsibilities for the restoration of the fountain. The advertisement will close on January 20th. Proposals will be reviewed immediately and a recommendation to award made shortly thereafter. 

The Forensic Evaluation was completed in 2022. The findings noted that the concrete basin is in good quality and the distress of the tile system was caused by a bonding failure between the leveling mortar and thinset mortar. The thinset mortar had not been modified with a commonly known polymer that promotes bonding of mortar layers. The recommendation is to salvage the tiles, remove mortar, and rebuild the tile system with freeze/thaw durable mortars that are polymer modified to promote bonding. When a consultant is hired for the project, more discussion of this recommendation will take place.

July 18, 2022

The forensic evaluation is schedule to begin the week of July 25th. The consultant will perform a site visit, perform a visual assessment, and perform core sampling of the fountain for their study. The testing of the materials will take several weeks and a few more to analyze and report the findings.

May 24, 2022

Parks and Recreation has issued a contract for a forensic evaluation of the fountain tile and basin at Cochran Park. Materials such as tile, mortar, grout, and concrete will be tested in a laboratory and the findings described in a report which will give us a better understanding where improvements can be made to prolong the life of the fountain. With the time required to conduct the forensic evaluation, prepare the report, and review the recommendations, it is likely the fountain will not be restored this summer.

April 21, 2022

The project has been assigned to a project manager. More information will be available in the the next couple weeks.

Our preliminary schedule for this project is as follows:




April 2022 - May 2022Project Start, contracting, and analysis
April 2023Issue construction contracts
April - May 2023Tile removal and installation and railing restoration
June 30 2023Project Close Out

We'll provide updates on this page through the duration of the project.

Last Edited: March 25, 2024