First United Tabernacle Church of Orange, NJ

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The existing church located in Orange, New Jersey wanted to expand their building to accommodate their large and growing worship community. The existing building is a three-story structure with a 250 seat sanctuary on the third floor level. The main focus of the building is to reuse the existing building infrastructure and expand on it as necessary to create a 550 seat sanctuary. This was accomplished by an addition off the front of the building providing the necessary space for the completely rebuilt sanctuary.

On the level below the sanctuary there is an existing multi-purpose community room. This also is going to be expanded to more than double its original size. This will allow for larger gatherings that the existing facility can not currently accommodate. Also, an expansion of the entry narthex provides a larger covered exterior and enclosed interior entry area to allow parishioners to mingle more easily.

A major part of the design is the solving of major engineering issues. The building is relatively close to the front of the site, so an addition on the front going down to ground level would block the vehicle entry and drop off area. The lowest level of the addition is elevated to allow sheltered parking under the building and not block the flow of site traffic. Also, the creation of the soaring height sanctuary requires special engineering too accomplish and to blend it into the existing structure.