Plans for 253 Colombo St
Narrative Description of the 253 Colombo Street Development.
What is below can’t cover everything, but hopefully is a bit of a guide to reading the plans (for those of us not used to reading building plans!)
The outside (Colombo Street) frontage of the building has been carefully designed to provide the greatest welcome and ease of access into the building. At footpath level there are two sets of steps (one to the north and one to the south) leading up to the front door. These steps are curved, and on the north and south sides of these steps there are areas for seating. The frontage has been designed to try and make the church not just a place to walk past (or through) but a place where people might congregate as well. This is helped by a glass canopy over the front door (utilizing the existing arches that are there) as well as planting gardens. A ramp also runs up the north side of the entrance.
Through double entrance doors is the foyer – a single open space. On the north end of the foyer is a commercial-grade kitchen, loosely modeled after the Hillview kitchen. Five toilets (including one accessible bathroom) are accessed through a small hallway in the northwest corner of the foyer. Towards the south of the foyer are stairs, under which is a storage area.
From the foyer, access to the church auditorium is through two sets of double doors. The auditorium will seat up to about 200 people. It is an open, single-level space, into which we will be able to insert low staging to make a raised area at the front (the west end) for preaching / leading / communion table, etc. Musicians will be off to one side at the front (the north-west corner). Projection will most probably be on two screens or TVs on either side of the existing high windows on the west end of the building.
On both the north and south walls there are frosted windows providing natural light. There is a creche / crying room in the south-east corner, which is accessible from both inside the auditorium and the foyer. This room will have a glass window into the auditorium and sound system to allow people to see and listen to the service. There will be storage above the creche and the toilets. The auditorium will be carpeted, with a lined, pitched ceiling.
From the foyer there are also stairs leading to offices upstairs. The stairs are configured so that access to upstairs can happen without going through the foyer – i.e., there’s an outside door to the base of the stairs accessible from the front porch. The upstairs area has a toilet and kitchen facilities, along with some storage. There is an office on the south side, and an office / meeting room on the north side, with the rest of the area being open plan. This doesn’t mean that we can’t partition this area off for different offices, but does mean that we have flexibility in how we do this. These three areas, plus the foyer downstairs, will be used for Sunday School, youth group, etc.
Outside, there are approximately 8 carparks at the rear of the building, as well as a number of bike parks. This is not as many as we had at St Nicholas’ (approximately 16), or at St Saviour’s (10). Like St Saviour’s there is a bus stop directly outside the building, and also parking on side streets (Angus, King, Southampton). The frontage of the building (facing east) will be softened with five windows on the top floor, as well as seating, plantings, etc. The roller door on the south side will be replaced with windows on both floors. There will be opportunities for the name of the church, a cross, etc. to adorn the outside.