VICTORIA — For five weeks now, the three-man C&M Restoration crew has been all but calling Victoria home.
More specifically, the front steps of the Basilica of St. Fidelis.
First they tore out the old steps and then prepared the footings for a new set.
The final touches are being put on the steps this week, with the installation of massive pieces of Indiana limestone that will serve as landings for the front entrance of the church, long known as the Cathedral of the Plains and considered to be one of the 8 Wonders of Kansas.
Along the way, Bobby Reynolds, Jimmy Jones and Jason Bower, the crew members, have been photographed numerous times as residents and parishioners stopped to check on the progress.
Bower said the steps likely will be in place before the end of the week, but he expects to return for a few more days next week to clean up the site.
The old steps, he said, had deteriorated in the more than 100 years the church has been open.
The new steps started going in place last week.
The limestone used to make the steps came from Indiana, Bower said, but were cut in Topeka.
Five steps and a landing were installed, along with two entryways — out of three leading into the church.
Bower said residents frequently stopped by.
“More than look,” he said. “They voiced their opinions.”
They liked the new look, Bower said.
He liked the church as well.
“One of the most beautiful churches I’ve ever worked on,” Bower said.