BIM on the Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral

WRAL, WNCN and WTVD sit down with Clancy & Theys to Discuss the Construction of Raleigh’s New Cathedral

WRAL, WNCN and WTVD sit down with Clancy & Theys to Discuss the Construction of Raleigh’s New Cathedral

July 25, 2017


On the eve of the church’s formal dedication, WRAL, WNCN and WTVD visited with Clancy & Theys’ Harry McKinney, Director of Virtual Design and Construction, to discuss the unique details of the construction of the Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral in Raleigh.


The cathedral’s 162-ton dome has become a landmark for the city since it was lifted into place in March 2016. Speaking with WRAL’s David Crabtree, Harry revealed the dome’s copper skin hides a series of catwalks Clancy & Theys designed using 3D software.

Harry described the complexity of the design “like threading a thread through a fine needle hole.”

“To really understand this complexity and the number of catwalk levels you need to access the sprinklers and lights, just making it all fit turned out to be one of the biggest surprises of all,” he added.

Recalling the moment a crane lifted the dome into place last spring, with a margin of error of less than a half-inch, Harry shared that everyone was holding their breath. “Our company leaders were there. The bishop was there. A huge crowd was there,” he said.

The process was expected to take three hours, but all present were relieved when the dome was in place in just 30 minutes. “That’s when everybody finally exhaled and inhaled again,” Harry said.

Noting the longevity of the structure, WRAL said that while Clancy & Theys spent three months designing the steel interior of the cathedral, the rest of the dome was constructed with a longer timeframe in mind.

“The materials chosen, particularly the copper roof, is there because that material will last for centuries,” Harry explained. “That’s the intent – it will be here generation after generation.”

Harry also shared details of the cathedral’s construction with Raleigh’s WNCN and WTVD:



 To view full coverage of this story, please follow the links below:

WRAL: click here

WNCN: click here

WTVD: click here

Clancy & Theys Discusses the Meticulous Design of the Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral’s Dome

Clancy & Theys Discusses the Meticulous Design of the Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral’s Dome

July 26, 2017

The News & Observer

 As Raleigh’s Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral opens its doors to the public this week, The News & Observer’s Martha Quillin sat down with Clancy & Theys to learn more about the meticulous process of designing and erecting the cathedral’s copper dome.

Constructing a structure like this is a once in a lifetime opportunity, and Director of Virtual Design and Construction Harry McKinney wanted to get it right. In a way, he constructed the dome twice – the first time using 3D-design software to build and test the architect’s vision in virtual form. “Virtual design helps prevent problems in the field,” Harry said, and reduces surprises.

Vice President Baker Glasgow added 3D modeling saves time and money on a project by revealing problems when they’re easiest to correct: before materials are purchased and construction is underway.

Harry told Martha he and his team made an important discovery while modeling the dome. The architect had not devised a method for maintenance workers to access the dome once it was hoisted 171 feet in the air. The Clancy & Theys team built the virtual model out to the finest detail, inclusive of all the fastening bolts, rendering the catwalks and ladders that would make the dome accessible for fixing sprinkler heads and changing light bulbs.

Armed with the complete models, builders were able to construct the dome on site as work on the rest of the cathedral continued. In March 2016, the 324,000-pound, 65-foot-tall dome was lifted onto the cathedral with exacting standards, with a margin of error of less than a half-inch.

“And it will last for hundreds of years,” Harry added.

Read the full article here

Clancy & Theys and the Diocese of Raleigh Anticipate Dedication of the Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral

Clancy & Theys and the Diocese of Raleigh Anticipate Dedication of the Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral

July 21, 2017

News & Observer

 In the article “What is under Raleigh’s big Copper Dome? You Can See on Wednesday; here’s a preview,” The News & Observer’s Richard Stradling reveals some aesthetic details of the much-anticipated Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral. Clancy & Theys is the general contractor for the impressive, multi-year project, inclusive of a 162-ton copper dome rising 171 feet.

Under-the-Dome-ArticleAs an influx of Catholics has swelled congregations and spawned new parishes throughout Eastern North Carolina in the last several decades, the Diocese of Raleigh has maintained its cathedral in Sacred Heart Cathedral, a former parish church downtown that can seat only about 300 people. On a hilltop two miles west of downtown Raleigh, the new church will seat 2,000 parishioners, rivaling cathedrals in Philadelphia and Baltimore.

The cathedral’s bell tower houses 50 bells, which will be heard by the public for the first time this week. There will be 95 stained-glass windows in the cathedral, 45 of them restored from Philadelphia’s Ascension of Our Lord Catholic Church, which closed in 2012. The sanctuary is constructed of Tuscan marble and includes a marble chair for the bishop, which is what makes Holy Name of Jesus a cathedral and not just a grand church.

Wednesday’s ceremony will draw Catholic dignitaries from around the state and beyond, as the diocese goes from having the smallest cathedral in the continental United States to one surpassed in size only by those in San Francisco, Newark, New York and Los Angeles. The dedication will be the church’s chance to throw open the doors to the finished cathedral for the first time.

The dedication of Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral will begin at 2 p.m. Wednesday. Tickets for the event are all taken, but it will be broadcast live on the diocese YouTube channel,


 Read the full article here.

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