Asbury is taking the first steps to convert the dream of a new facility into reality. The leaders and committees who are at the forefront of the project will be using OutReach newsletters, e-mails and website postings to ensure that everyone in the Asbury family is up-to-date on the project.
The planning process is just beginning, but here is where we stand right now. Our initial goals were based on a projected cost of approximately $14 million for a proposed facility that included a larger sanctuary with a balcony and additional space for classrooms and ministries, the costs of additional parking required and a new athletic field complex in the wetlands area along the east side of the access road from Highway 119. That initial estimate was developed with the idea that projected costs would be refined as our design plans were developed.
Since that estimate was developed, assumptions in the initial building concept have been challenged and modified. For example, the cost associated with building a balcony outweighs its advantages, so it was removed from consideration to reduce the overall building cost. Expanding athletic fields into the environmentally-protected wetlands turned out to be costly as well, so a new plan was developed that expands our athletic complex while minimizing wetland incursion to reduce costs. We will also use fill dirt from our own hillside when creating added parking, which will save money and allow us to create a roadway that encircles the entire campus. Additionally, Asbury now has the ability to purchase materials for the project at a significant savings as a tax-free entity.
These significant cost savings, along with the $5.2 million in pledges and donations received so far, allowed us the opportunity to evaluate whether or not to move ahead. After much prayer and deliberation, Asbury’s lay leadership decided to move ahead with construction to fulfill the original dream that was laid out in Asbury’s master plan when we moved to our current site in 1994.
The Reach campaign committee has now moved into the background and the formal building committee, which was appointed on September 15, 2015 at a called Charge Conference, has been active in laying the groundwork that will enable us to begin the enormous tasks associated with this project. This committee has been active in laying the groundwork that will enable us to begin the enormous tasks associated with this project. CTSM Architects, the firm that designed our master plan and existing buildings has been selected to oversee the project design. Right now, we are in the earliest stages of construction planning and while we have a general outline of where the building will be located, it will be several months before we have specific details and blueprints to share with you.
During those months, sub-committees will be working with CTSM to refine plans, and will welcome your input. Please find a list of the sub-committees and their members here. As plans transition from the conceptual stage, you will receive regular updates on the project’s progress.
Coming up, there will be a Charge Conference at the Church Council meeting in February to review what has been developed thus far. Final approval to build and borrow will come during a later church-wide Charge Conference that will be called once we have final plans along with detailed costs.
If you have questions, please reach out to one of the committee leaders listed here, or ask your question through the link on Asbury’s home page, and check this OUTReach section of Asbury’s website for interim updates as we reach important milestones in this new, exciting chapter in Asbury’s history.