This post is another in our series on transformations of existing church physical plants. Through these articles, we are illustrating some of the church building transformations that we have completed in recent years, explaining what we did and why it worked. Hopefully, this series will inspire new church design ideas for your existing facilities as well.
Reason to Transition: A Church Design that Plans for Future Change
As we illustrated in the last article in this series, sometimes change is forced upon you, as when an historic church building is no longer structurally stable and cannot be used. On the other hand, sometimes it’s wise to plan for building changes and remodeling from the very beginning, which is what happened with Beaver Creek Church of the Nazarene.
Beaver Creek definitely planned ahead when they first sat down with us to design their new worship center. At the time, they were a congregation of 400, but their church’s vision was for a worshipping community of a thousand. However, they didn’t want to build a worship space that would seem half-empty while their community grew, so we designed a two-phase facility for them.
The first phase, shown above, seats 600. It’s spacious, modern, perfectly functional, and also has two walls built into it at the back of the room. Behind those walls were classrooms and offices that were used during the first phase. When the church had grown to 600 members, they were ready for the second phase. At that point, we came in and removed the walls, offices and classrooms in order to create the thousand-seat sanctuary that was their original goal.
Converting an Office Building into a Church Building
Another reason that you might actually plan a church design transformation from the very beginning is if you buy a property with that specific goal in mind. Heritage Wesleyan Church in Bettendorf, Iowa, is a multi-site church. It purchased this office building with the specific intention of converting it for use as one of its satellites.
While the initial church design idea was to do just a facelift and add onto the front of the building, they wanted their worship center to be on the upper level. The final church design included tearing off part of the roof and building the walls higher in order to incorporate everything that they wanted in their new church building.
As you can see here, it worked out well for them. The section we added out front makes a nice foyer, with plenty of space and a layout that works. Downstairs, the original office spaces were converted fairly easily into children’s classrooms, while upstairs the worship space is meeting the needs of this satellite community.
Do you have an outdated church building or an older physical plant in need of new inspiration? These illustrations came from one of our recent free i3 webinars. Sign up today to learn more about other church design transformation ideas!