DAVID MCKNIGHT | PRESIDENT
A technical change to state building codes is going to shrink the dollar you use for church construction.
Most churches across the land struggle between the desire for a high quality building and more space for ministry. The more you pay for quality, the less you have for space – and vice versa. As a Church Architect, we are presenting options to our client, the church, to help them decide. Either way a balance must be found.
For years, inflation of commodities such as steel, cement, copper, gypsum and oil have driven the cost of materials and buildings, giving a church builder a challenge to keep things in budget. The global market affects the cost of these items as well as the value of the dollar.
Interdependently related in this balancing act is the building code. You can always build better than the building code, but you cannot build less than the building code. A recent change in the building code requires you to have an unbroken layer of insulation all around the outside of a building. The benefits of Continuous Insulation (CI) will definitely help save energy, but this additional requirement is causing a great change to the building industry.
That might sound simple enough, but it’s significant, especially for churches that want to build a very low priced building for ministry space. While CI produces better, more energy-efficient buildings, it will also eliminate the ability to choose.
An advantage to this new code? Buildings will be much better insulated and help reduce the energy loss though walls and roofs. However, you will pay for the gains in energy efficiency. The new construction methods and materials that will need to be used to achieve the CI will add 7.5% to 10% to the building on the lower end of the cost spectrum. Higher end building may also be affected through enhanced mechanical systems.
As codes change and regulations shift, walking through your building experience will be much easier with a Church Design Build Specialist. Familiarity with building codes and designing cost-effective strategies, in light of them, is a crucial part of keeping your budget in line.