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From disaster comes opportunity

By Rodney C. James

After 20,000 feet of space in an Oklahoma church was flooded, leaders embraced the chance to renovate for maximum ministry.

In 2011 at Crossroads Church in Oklahoma City, OK, the main waterline to the fire sprinkler system failed inside the building.

Nearly eight inches of water covered 20,000 square feet of educational space, offices and a nursery area. Everything was destroyed, and extensive measures had to be taken to avoid further complications, including mold.

While the facility seemed devastated, the opportunity to repurpose this outdated space rose to the forefront. In particular, the church needed a space large enough to host multiple church-wide events throughout the year.

First, the entire facility was gutted from wall to wall, including the founding pastor’s original office. (Much of the heritage from the original building was saved and incorporated into the renovated event center.) This entire space was repurposed into an open area with seating for more than 800, banquet-style, as well as a legacy conference room that displays ornate carvings from the original offices. Also added were a bookstore, expanded kitchen, and great gathering space.

The nuts and bolts
After demolition, the entire structure needed to be brought up to date. In the process, a water-runoff problem persisted, which was remedied by installing 200 feet of French drains to capture all the water runoff from the parking and surrounding areas. A pump was then installed to redirect the captured water to the storm drain system. The underground drainage was overhauled in the atrium area, and water runoff was directed to the storm drains.

New sidewalks were installed, and prep work was done for a new xeriscape-style landscaping, which the church installed itself. All this was done to remove moisture from around the building.

Inside, the building was dismantled down to the structure and built back up into a state-of-the-art event center. Today, this 10,000-square-foot facility is equipped with 10 video screens, digital electronic hardware on all doors, lighting with independent controls to enhance every type of event, and top-of-the-line presentation electronics.

The bookstore is centrally located near the coffee shop, event center, sanctuary and reception hall. Here, members can socialize and shop before and after events and services.

The original kitchen was demolished and rebuilt. Now, it’s a 1,100-square-foot setup featuring top-of-the-line, stainless steel, commercial-grade appliances, including a walk-in deep freezer. The remodel also includes a 480-square-foot conference room, which is ideal for smaller meetings.

Executive Pastor Brandon Porter says the renovation speaks to the church’s ministry goals: to give honor to God by creating an attractive, welcoming place to worship. “It gave our church a place to have fellowships for our church body, as well as to have large community events,” he explains. “After opening the event center, we served more than 1,000 people from our community a Thanksgiving meal.”

Now, the project is moving into phase two — a 30,000-square-foot remodel of existing educational space. When complete, this area will be a state-of-the-art children’s space, with extensive theming.

As Crossroads Church proves, there’s always opportunity for growth — no matter what the circumstance.

Rodney C. James is business manager / director of finance at Daniels & Daniels Construction in Broken Arrow, OK.

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