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The Cathedral of Saint Paul

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The Cathedral of Saint Paul
St. Paul's Cathedral


Structure in General

existing [completed]
exposed structure
light gray
beaux-arts / historism
active heating (unspecified)


church (roman catholic)


  • Overlooking the western side of downtown, the Cathedral anchors the far eastern end of the Summit Avenue historic district, one of the longest preserved streets of Victorian homes in the United States.
  • The main entrance faces downtown to the east and is under a monumental arch that frames the central rose window. The interior is finished in buff and gray Mankato limestone and lighted by 24 large windows (Maginnis & Walsh of Boston) located at the base of the massive dome.
  • Ceremonies marking the end of the roof restoration project were held on 7 October 2002, and the new 500 lb. Aluminum Cross was lifted into place the following day.
  • The restoration was recognized with a 2003 Heritage Preservation Award by the City of St. Paul.
  • The Cathedral was the tallest structure in St. Paul until completion of the First National Bank Building in 1930.
  • The massive marble altar was designed by Whitney Warren, architect of New York's Grand Central Station.
  • The rose window facing east is known as the Resurrection Window. It is 26 feet in diameter, with the center exactly 53 feet above the main entrance elevation.
  • McGough replaced the copper roof from March 2001-October 2002. It will take 20 years of exposure to the weather for the new roof to acquire the green color familiar to Twin Cities residents and travelers on Interstate 94.
  • The Minnesota State Capitol is located at the opposite end of John Ireland Boulevard. Together, the two buildings form monumental bookends to this street.
  • Behind the altar is the Shrine of Nations, six chapels honoring the patron saints of immigrant groups important in the early European settlement of Minnesota.
  • The building's architect, Emmanual Masqueray, also designed The Basilica of Saint Mary, 10 miles to the west in downtown Minneapolis.
  • The fashionable neighborhood just to the west is named Cathedral Hill, and features many of the largest homes in the Twin Cities from the turn of the last century.
  • The chapels honor St. Anthony of Padua (Italy), John the Baptist (France and Canada), St. Patrick (Ireland), St. Boniface (Germany), Saints Cyril and Methodius (Slavic Nations) and St. Therese (protector of all missions).
  • It is the fourth-largest church in the United States after the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City, The Cathedral Church of St. Peter and St. Paul (or Washington National Cathedral) and the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, both in Washington, DC.

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More Information


199-203 Summit Avenue
204-240 Dayton Avenue, 205-237 Selby Avenue
201 Summit Avenue
St. Paul

Technical Data

306.50 ft
306.50 ft
307.00 ft
216.00 ft

Involved Companies

Maginnis & Walsh

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Features & Amenities

  • One of the city's famous buildings
  • City landmark
  • National landmark
  • Cathedral title is officially assigned
  • Floodlighting at night
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