Sanctuary - Expansion Sub Committee

Notes from December 10, 2014 Meeting

In attendance were: Bruce Atherton, Carol Graves, Whitney Warner, Brandi Jackson, and Gaylen Heaberlin.

No one present has had any feedback from congregants about the sanctuary expansion. At present, the subcommittee is working under the assumption that the sanctuary will expand into the narthex.

Bruce counted 17 pews in the sanctuary at the present time plus the seating in the choir loft and chairs at the rear of the sanctuary. Counting only the pews, the capacity is 85 at 5 persons per pew, or 102 at 6 persons per pew.

It is 18’ 6” from the last pew to the north wall of the narthex, or room for 6 rows of pews at the present spacing of 37” between pews. However, we will need a passageway which would eliminate one row of pews, at least, and we have discussed having more room at the front of the pews, which would eliminate another row. That leaves a maximum of 4 rows or 8 pews, for a total of 25 pews. After adding the 8 pews, the capacity would be between 25 x 5 = 125 and 25 x 6 = 150 people.

There was quite a bit of discussion about whether the door to the expanded sanctuary should be straight and in line with the old church wall, or angled. If straight, a small closet could be constructed against the north wall between the sanctuary and the stair railing. The closet would be pretty small. It was pointed out that the angled doorway may allow the passageway to be along the north wall, otherwise, with the straight wall, the passageway would likely be between pews, separating one or two rows of pews from the rest. No decision was made.

We discussed the desirability of a proposed “cry room”. Consensus seemed to be that it was preferable to have regular seating rather than a cry room. Gaylen proposed asking King’s and Geisenhoff’s their opinion since they have young children, and emailed them later. Dana and April King responded and their comments are attached to these notes.

There was further discussion about the transition between the narthex and the sanctuary and not having it look like two separate spaces. Brandi suggested having the ceiling slope up from the north wall as much as possible; we are not sure how high that is. The current roof is sloped to the north from the old church and that will be one limitation on a sloping ceiling.

We discussed removing the roof over the narthex and building a new roof that matches the roof and ceiling over the old church. Several felt this would be ideal, but we don’t know the cost or other implications of doing this.

Another idea was to turn the sanctuary around so the altar was in the renovated narthex. This would allow people to enter through both the old entrance and the new narthex.

To gain room in the front of the church, we discussed moving the wall behind the choir further south. That would entail moving the stairs to the basement and other unknown items.

The meeting ended around 8:30 PM.

Respectfully submitted by Bruce Atherton