Renovations are well under way at the Old Post Office Museum and Art Center, but the facility still has a long way to go.

Repairs to the historic landmark are much-needed due to the previous damage caused by a leaky roof that was replaced in early 2012. The museum originally had a flat roof with two drain pipes that still run through the walls of the building and into the street, and provided the only exit for water collected during rainfall. Although they were cleaned by city crews when needed, the pipes couldn't keep all of the water from settling on the roof. 

The OPOMAC now has a pitched roof, but the damage remains. 

Repairs started on Feb. 24 and are steadily progressing. Plaster from the ceilings has been chipped off intentionally for repairs. Once a piece is forcefully chipped, it continues to keep chipping through neighboring loose plaster. 

Paul Alaniz and his employee, Joe Bynum, have filled all of the gaping holes left behind from chipped plaster with an all-purpose lightweight joint compound, most of which was applied where the light structure was removed. Several hours of compound application and days of drying later, the ceiling in the main gallery of the museum has been completely floated, sanded down and given three coats of gray paint. Up next, the walls in the main gallery will be painted.

“The hardest part of the repairs was getting everything prepared (to be fixed),” Alaniz said of the work he and his crew have done so far. “We're hoping to get started painting (soon). After this is all done, repairs won't be needed for a very long time.”

Read more in Wednesday's Graham Leader.

(Julianne Murrah)