Churches: United Methodist

Black River Falls, WI

The design objective was to expand a 1950 church to meet the 1995 requirements of a 250 seat sanctuary, dining/fellowship hall, kitchen, administrative area, choir practice room, nursery, narthex/overflow, and eleven classrooms. An elevator was added to serve all levels and a drop-off area for the new sanctuary and existing architectural barriers were removed so that the entire facility could be used by all.

The structure is located in a residential neighborhood on a highly visible site. The cross and tower can be viewed from the downtown area. A large, traditional gable marks the worship space, while lower roof lines wrap the narthex to reduce the scale to residential proportions.

The congregation desired that the new sanctuary preserve the previous sanctuary’s sense of closeness. The sanctuary was arranged in a fan shaped plan to enhance the sense of community within the church. Natural light fills the sanctuary with borrowed light from the new narthex and north facing windows.