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SUPERSTRUCTURES
Engineers + Architects

14 Wall Street
New York, NY 10005
(212) 505 1133

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info@superstructures.com

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    SuperScript is a quarterly newsletter from SUPERSTRUCTURES. Founded in 1981, we are a firm of architects, structural engineers, and conservators dedicated to the art and science of exterior restoration.

      SuperScript

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      October 6, 2022

      Nunc Pro Tunc

      Nunc Pro Tunc (noonk proh tuhnk) is a catchy Latin phrase meaning “now for then.”  It’s typically applied in a legal context when a judgment is entered to have the same legal force and effect as if it had been entered previously. The phrase applies to our field, too.

      Often, a restoration campaign introduces a solution to a building deficiency that ideally would have been incorporated into the original construction. For example: the introduction of expansion joints in a bulging parapet; the introduction of soft joints in a brick veneer over a concrete-frame structure suffering from creep shrinkage; or the addition of drains to a leaking, flat roof that’s ponding water.

      Historically, building designers were diligent, but sometimes didn’t realize how conventional practice would interact with a new construction technique. The omission of soft joints in early veneer-wall concrete-fame construction is a prime example.

      Fortunately, we have technology today to retroactively remediate some of these inborn deficiencies after the fact. While we can’t go back in time, we can “nunc pro tunc.”

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