Church architecture on New England Town Greens is a unique architectural and civic presence. At the far western end of the Madison Green, a 1955 Modernist church with a 23-foot-wide sanctuary and a prototypic 1960’s flat-roofed education wing, untouched for the last 40 years, was called upon to respond to new uses and yet remain true to its contexts – architectural and civic.  

Completed on Easter of 2007 with a remarkably restricted budget of $1,200,000 for over 8,000 square feet of new and renovated space (a 3,000 sq. ft. new sanctuary and choir loft and 5,000 sq. ft. of gut and rehabbed space - bathrooms, kitchen, Sacristy, all non-bearing interior walls and surfaces) plus a revamped parking lot, new septic, and common entry.  

The new program of use is typical of early 21st century churches, which meant the church had to accommodate full family programming, requiring one central entry for education, worship, and parish hall functions. To preserve a sense of the sacred despite this common entry, an internal “Narthex” rotunda was created at the joint between parish hall, kitchen, worship space, and the common lobby.  

The sanctuary, is formed in four parts:

1) Band - continuation of the existing sanctuary’s 14-foot-high brick walls around its girth provides isolation from the Green’s sound and visual intrusion.

2) Gap - glass and Kalwall clerestory windows above the brick band provide light and connection to nature.

3) Bones - the salvaged fir post and beam timber frame virtually creates the worship space.

4) Skin - a SIPS panel roof that dramatically extends and returns the lines of the existing sanctuary roof animates the final form.  

Building anything requires faith, and here a dark corner of the Madison Green now harbors an anchoring beacon of faith.
Existing Construction
Exterior - After
Interior - After