by: Gillian Ford
Contributor: David Sanger, Trustee
The 2009 Sesquicentennial Missional Campaign set aside funds to upgrade the flooring and carpeting in the sanctuary. This work was paused due to other priorities, but it is now proceeding. The sanctuary is the main feature of our historic 1888 building, and the trustees have worked hard to be sure that our design honors the historic nature of the space and works to improve it for modern-day worship.
Some of our goals included honoring the history of the room, improving the acoustics, addressing safety issues with the current worn carpeting, repairing or replacing the wood flooring under the pews, and providing new carpeting that offers longevity of service.
Since we had a sample of the original 1888 carpeting, the trustees decided to recreate the original design while incorporating colors already in the sanctuary. The original 1888 carpet was wool and manufactured by Axminster Carpets; the company is still in business and is creating our new carpeting using the original design. The patterned carpet will be limited to the main level of the sanctuary. In the stairways and the balcony you will see a complementary solid color. Stairwell carpeting will be a durable nylon which will withstand heavy use. Stiles Chapel will also receive new carpeting.
Wood plank flooring will be used under the pews to replace the parquet. This is a more historic look and will provide great durability. Wood plank flooring will also be used on the dais at the front of the sanctuary and in the choir loft. Using low pile carpeting and additional hardwoods will improve the acoustics of the room for worship and musical performances.
Product will begin arriving in mid to late June and you will see materials stored in part of the Fellowship Hall and back of the sanctuary. Once work begins in the balcony, access to that level will be closed. On the main level, areas will be partitioned off as pews are lifted, flooring replaced, and carpeting laid. Work begins Monday, July 15 and is expected to be completed in about ten weeks—roughly the end of September.
Come to worship and experience this exciting transition as we work to respect our traditions and create a wonderful space for the future.
Check out the new design and stay up to date on the project here!