Summary from December 7 Building Committee Update

Building Committee Presentation on 12/7/14


  1. The Building Committee is finalizing the design elements for incorporation into the detailed plans to be provided to contractors invited to bid on the Great Hall project. In order to stay on a path to complete construction by September 1, 2015, we need to complete that work in December so that a contractor can be selected in January. Construction could begin as soon as mid-May.
  2. Major areas of focus have been the location and placement of the elevator, the enhanced storage for the Food Pantry and church use, the systems for heating and cooling the Great Hall, audio-visual needs and systems, potential kitchen upgrades and the interior finishes. Key points:
    1. Elevator location has been determined, and we have concluded that it is feasible and cost effective to construct a single elevator serving the three main church levels. This construction work will require modification of the current office and the sanctuary level hallway to accommodate the centrally located elevator.
    2. Storage has been designed to enable full out of sight storage of the Food Pantry’s materials and for Redeemer’s needs in the enlarged rear storage area and in cabinets along the side walls of the Great Hall.
    3. Audiovisual needs have been identified and an initial design produced to permit flexible use of the Great Hall in many configurations and to ensure good sound quality within the Hall and in the smaller rooms.
    4. A kitchen committee has been recruited to work on functional and cosmetic enhancements that might be considered as part of the project or as follow-on work.
    5. The Building Committee and architect have made some initial selections for carpet, tile, cabinetry, trim and paint color and presented a “palette” to show these finishes to the congregation-these will remain in the Great Hall over the next several weeks to allow any interested parishioners to view them and comment. The emphasis is on warm colors and textures with enduring appeal, durability and favorable wear characteristics so that our end result will be something we can live with for a long period of time.
    6. The current heating system is working well and has been deemed adequate to the needs of the new space without further modification, with the addition of air conditioning in the Great Hall for moisture control in the summer and to accommodate larger gatherings during warm-weather months, which can be added easily and at modest cost to current forced hot air system. Because the steam system serving the sanctuary works well, we have concluded that it is not necessary to replace the steam pipes at this point; although the design of the ceiling will allow this at a later point if called for without the demolition that would otherwise be required.


  1. The Realizing Our Vision Campaign now has pledges and contribution of $865,000 from within our Redeemer community. Also, we have received $10,000 from the Food Pantry and $50,000 from the Dana Home Foundation. We are grateful for the generosity of our community!

Thank you to the Building Committee for this comprehensive update. More detailed notes from the meeting are included below.

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Detailed Notes

On Sunday, December 7, Gerry Frank, our architect from Bechtel, Frank and Erickson, and Christopher Huggins, representing the Building Committee, provided an update on the development of the design for our Great Hall renovation. In addition to Christopher, the Building Committee includes George Murnaghan, Bruce Francis, Lee Noel Chase and Lance Conrad.

The Building Committee and the Architect have a growing sense of joy as they visualize how the project will come together and how the new Great Hall will reflect the warmth, inclusiveness and sense of community of the Church of Our Redeemer. The Architect is recommending classic warm colors, finishes and textures that reflect the personality of the parish, and also will last for many years without becoming dated.

The Architect stressed how the Building Committee has done a phenomenal job in this planning stage. He noted that the Architect is only as good as his client, and that our Building Committee has been an outstanding client. Thank you to Christopher, Bruce, George, Lee Noel and Lance for their dedication to making the project a reality.

The planning stage is on a very short timetable. In order to have the work completed by September 1 it is necessary to finish the designs and construction documents in December and to obtain bids and select a contractor by the end of January. The team originally sought to begin work on 6/16 but now recommends considering beginning work on 5/11 (right after Mother’s Day) in order to ensure there is sufficient time to complete the project during the summer, when the level of disruption will be relatively low. The team noted that during the construction the contractor would either have an office in the Church building, or in a trailer in the parking lot. The Food Pantry will move to another location during the construction. Christopher noted that there would be disruption during the construction, especially as the elevator shaft is installed. However, timing the construction during the summer will minimize the disruption.

The Building Committee obtained bids on replacing the steam pipes and the heating system but the costs were prohibitive for systems that currently work well. The architect is designing the project so that these systems are accessible and can be updated in the future.

  • CHURCH STEAM SYSTEM: The team sought bids to replace the steam pipes that heat the church that run through the ceiling because of the concern that the inside of the pipes were narrowing due to a build up of calcium. A mechanical engineer created specifications and pricing was obtained.   Because the heating system works well today the decision was made not to update them at this time. The Architect is designing the ceiling so that the pipes will be easily replaced via the dropped acoustic ceiling we will be installing.
  • GREAT HALL FORCED HOT AIR SYSTEM: Our current Great Hall furnace will be satisfactory. It was just replaced a year ago. However, the team identified a need to add air conditioning, particularly given the desire to use the space for wedding receptions and other events. Therefore, air conditioning coils are being included in the project.   The engineer has noted that the air conditioning system may not be as strong as it needs to be in terms of BTUs given the space requirements.   The Committee is developing a plan if the air conditioning needs to be upgraded to a higher BTU system. Lastly, an upgraded fan system is being included in the project to improve air circulation.

The Building Committee recommends including painting the kitchen and replacing the kitchen floor in the project. The Building Committee and the Ad Hoc Kitchen Committee have identified additional kitchen improvements that can be planned for implementation in the future. The Ad Hoc Kitchen Committee includes parishioners who are regular users of the kitchen, including Kathy and Steve Burns, Paula Antonovich, Evelyn Hausslein and Connie Parish. Among the recommended improvements is replacing the existing stove with a new stove with 2 ovens, 6 burners and a grill. Portable electric griddles can be purchased to be used for the Patriot’s Day Pancake Breakfast. New countertop space would be added, along with new cabinets. Other improvements recommended for the future include replacing the refrigerator; improving the serving windows and fixing cabinets that slide more easily.

The Ad Hoc Kitchen Committee has recently done a huge amount of work cleaning out and reorganizing the kitchen. Thank you to Steve, Kathy, Paula, Evelyn and Connie!

The Committee is negotiating the proposed AV system. The system will allow for the Great Hall space to be used as two rooms or as one, and will provide for high quality sound (necessary for weddings and events) and video. Included in the specifications are 16 Bose Speakers, 2 screens that will descend from the ceiling (for movies or PowerPoint presentations), twobuilt in projectors and microphones. Additional possible items include 2 flat screens for the walls of the Great Hall and 1 flat screen for the hallway coming in to the Great Hall. The initial bid was $76,000, which is above budget. The team is negotiating with the supplier.

The Committee has provided samples of paints, finishes and carpet. The colors and finishes are fresh, warm and classic, but not trendy. Parishioners can review these in the Great Hall (to the right as you enter by the kitchen) and provide feedback to the Building Committee as soon as possible

The carpet being recommended for the Great Hall will be a light color, will be easily cleaned and easily repaired with a lifetime guarantee. The type of carpet being considered is frequently used in school cafeterias and other high traffic applications. The carpet is a safety improvement because it eliminates slipping and reduces falls. It also allows for the easyrolling of carts across the floor (particularly important for the Food Pantry). The carpet will also improve the acoustics of the room.

Window treatments are still being developed. The window treatments will allow the room to be darkened for movies and presentations.

The bathrooms are being brought up to code to be fully accessible.

The plans include a coat closet.

The Realizing Our Vision campaign has raised $875,000, significantly above the goal of $800,000. This total includes the $10,000 contribution from the Food Pantry, but not the $50,000 from the Dana Foundation. In the near future the Realizing Our Vision team will be sending out letters confirming pledge amounts and timing. Thank you to everyone in the community that pledged to the Realizing Our Vision campaign to allow “Room for the Spirit…Room for All”.

Thank you to Christopher Huggins, Gerry Frank and George Murnaghan for this comprehensive update. Please contact any of the Building Committee members with questions or comments.

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