New eBook examines — in-depth — the “heart” of church design: the worship space

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Every church is different. Even so, one thing they all have in common is the desire to create a space that evokes and contributes to a person’s worship experience. In this in-depth new eBook, “Designing Worship Spaces” series author Curtiss H. Doss, AIA — who has designed for church clients for more than two decades — talks about the unique DNA of each church, and why it must be honored in the church’s worship space design.

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Is your church campus truly engaging? A new eBook breaks it down

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For a church campus design to be effective, it must be engaging — beginning the moment someone walks through the door. In this new eBook, co-authors Allison Parrott and Paul Lodholz of Ziegler Cooper Architects discuss the importance of designing an engaging first impression: the church lobby, as well as 3 design musts for engaging sanctuary design.

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Engaging sanctuaries: 3 design “musts”

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Depending on the culture and style of your congregation, your sanctuary might look more traditional or more modern — there are many ways to express the beauty of Christian worship. Despite these differences, however, there are some common design elements that are useful in creating an engaging sanctuary, no matter what your worship style might be.

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Worship takes shape: examining traditional sanctuary design

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As Part 2 of this “Designing Worship Areas” series begins, let’s reiterate a primary concept from
Part 1: Every church is different. Having restated that precept, let’s now look at the traditional worship space and the elements through which it contributes to a person’s worship experience.

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Making sound (system) decisions

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What defines good sound? While some might argue that the concept is subjective, there are certain aspects of a good sound system that we can all agree on. Spoken word should be intelligible. Musical performance should be clear and full-range. And sound should be consistent, everywhere in the house.
Of course, addressing these goals will vary widely from one church to another. Are you welcoming your flock in a 1,000-seat sanctuary? Clearly, your needs will differ from a congregation meeting in a 300-seat chapel, an auditorium, or a converted warehouse space.

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Designing Worship Areas: Laying the foundation

First Baptist Church Milan — Milan, TN
(Photo provided by MNB Architects)

Beginning a seven-part series on worship space design can be a bit intimidating. There are so many avenues to consider, so many topics to discuss, and so many variables which can create completely different outcomes.The most important concept to communicate throughout this series is this: Every church is different. Each church has a DNA which must be honored. This DNA is made up of several factors, or lenses.

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The stewardship of space

Common sense and economics dictate that if you can make better use of your church’s existing multipurpose space, you can avoid costly building programs. The result is more money to fund your growing ministries.

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Multipurpose church design isn’t a trend — it’s a tradition

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In the early days, when settlers would start a new community in America, one of the first structures they built was the church. Today, the tradition continues as more and more churches create their own communities within their local communities.

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The case for maximizing your space

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Sometimes, renovation or expansion makes more sense than new construction.

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Carpets have come a long way under foot

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Today’s carpet can be made from recycled materials, and are readily recycled at the end of their lifespan.

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