In the spring of 2000, JRA Architects began the master planning process for the relocation of Fern Creek Christian Church to their new 15.83 campus on Bardstown Road near the Gene Synder Interchange. This farmland was graced with many beautiful trees, a winding creek, and a natural spring. In working with the building committee, it was decided to locate the church at a prominent point of the site, overlooking the intersection of Bardstown and Seatonville Roads. To accent their evangelism, their primary religious symbol, the cross, was placed towards this highly visible road crossing. The exact location of the building was also dictated by preserving the maximum number of mature hardwood trees on the property.
The church serves as the hub of the complex with the education and fellowship wings growing out from this center point in north and east directions. Parking is hidden behind this L-shaped building, preserving the natural green landscape in front of the complex. Small earth berms and evergreen trees were installed at the perimeter boundaries to provide screening for the neighboring homes. Chestnut wood was recycled from an old structure on the site to provide flooring for one of the conference rooms.
The phase one building program includes a worship space for 700 (expandable to 1000), offices, multipurpose classrooms, preschool rooms, gathering space, and a fellowship hall. The exterior design is composed of a series of volumes, with major forms being defined by the worship space, fellowship hall, and classrooms. The church has soaring brick walls and standing seam metal roof that frame the 50 foot tall cross. Flush metal walls panels offer an inviting contemporary composition against backdrop of the red brick panels.
Mark Trier, AIA, LEED AP
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