Compelling Environments: The 2012 Solomon Awards

Celebrating Innovation, Quality, and Service to Churches

The WFX Solomon Awards, presented by Worship Facilities Magazine, Worship Facilities Designer Magazine, and Church Production Magazine is the leading annual national award recognizing church building design across the full spectrum of church sizes and styles.

It’s been my privilege to serve on the WFX Advisory Council for the last five years, and part of my responsibility is participating in the judging of the Solomon Awards. I eagerly anticipate receiving the judging package each summer, because I know I will be looking at some of the best design and construction projects that are helping advance the message of Christ. Here is a brief summary of the winning projects:

Best Building ContractorVisioneering Studios, for Centerpoint Church in Murrieta, CA. Centerpoint Church recently moved to a green field site in the town of Murrieta. Realizing that they had outgrown the capacity of the modest building originally built, it was time to start the second phase with a larger auditorium and let the children grow in the original building.

Best Church Architect, 1-800 seats – CDH Partners, for St. Elmo UMC in Chattanooga, TN. St. Elmo UMC, located in a historic district, suffered a fire loss in 2009. Three exterior walls from the 1920s structure were preserved. An addition and rebuilding of the interior provided congregants with the best of both worlds: a new building within the historic walls of the original church.

Best Architect, 800+ seats – HH Architects, for the Family Life Center at Trietsch Memorial UMC in Flower Mound, TX. After experiencing the massive influx of refugees from Hurricane Katrina in 2005, and again from Hurricane Ike in 2008, Trietsch UMC commissioned not only an exciting space for their Youth program and for community Outreach, but also a certified Red Cross Shelter for future emergency needs.

Best Church Design: ExpansionHH Architects, for First Baptist Church Allen, TX Lobby and Children’s Building. HH Architects helped FBC Allen implement their vision of the 21st Century of unifying their existing campus of buildings reflecting their sixty year heritage  with the addition of a stunning new rotunda connector, and a Children’s Building designed for sustainability.

Best Church Design: New ProjectBLDD Architects, for the Betty and Kenneth Hawkins Centennial Chapel at Olivet Nazarene University. The Centennial Chapel provides a place for worship and outreach for one of the nation’s premier Christian universities. This 75,000 square-foot facility, with its 3,080 seat auditorium and large lobby/gathering space, accommodates a wide range of programs from music to lecture.

Best Church Design: RenovationLIVE Design Group, for Four One Five City Centre (Agape Church) in Laurel, MS. More than just a renovation project, the work of LIVE Design Group with Agape Church on their Four One Five City Centre project transformed an abandoned building into a thriving community center and growing church, while stimulating an exciting urban revitalization that has energized the entire town of Laurel.

Congregations to these congregations and the professional firms that helped them advance their mission through the built environment.

 

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