how it all started...

The design team was commissioned by the session and began meeting in the fall of 2016. We decided that we needed to hire architects for our overall plan. We interviewed three firms and selected one, Askew Nixon Ferguson (ANF). We began meeting with Rebecca Conrad and Amanda Whitaker, the two architects assigned to our project, in January 2017. 

The ANF team conducted focus groups to determine what was desired and needed in an exterior and interior redesign. From this research a list of design drivers was created. ANF presented those findings to the committee in order to make sure we were in agreement in the late spring of 2017.  The next step was to make some preliminary drawings, which the committee shared with the session. 

The steps from those preliminary drawings has been a long process. We have worked with the architects to resolve storage needs and to make the entrances more accessible. We have worked with artists to give the space more awe and beauty. We have worked with neighbors to have a mutually agreed-upon design approved by the Landmarks Commission and the Land Use Control Board.

These were the design drivers we set in collaboration with the architects after our meetings with our community:

  • Create a sacred space that evokes God, awe, and wonder

  • Showcase the beauty of natural light and harness its ability to transform space and place

  • Preserve views to the outside

  • Create an obvious and inviting entry

  • Arrange seating in the round

  • Use warm colors and materials

  • Maintain authenticity and urban charm

  • Preserve flexibility

  • Engage with the larger community through graphic

  • Recognize history and tradition while celebrating the new

  • Integrate nature both inside and out

  • Improve kitchen and ramp functionality

  • Increase storage