New Edition of Construction Update Available

A new edition the the Living Hope Construction Update is available now, and there are several ways you can read it: online, on your computer, from a copy you print, or from a copy you pick up at the Welcome Center. As part of their communications during the project, Elzinga & Volkers, our construction management partners, provide this monthly newsletter to keep everyone–near or far–informed about progress.

Click above or follow this link to read it online. Note the controls at the bottom of the screen: the scale at the left allows you to zoom in for legibility; the arrows in the center let you page through; and the two diagonal arrows on the far right will show the newsletter full-screen.

If you prefer to download the newsletter to read it in a PDF viewer (like Adobe Reader) or print it on your home printer, follow this link to the PDF.

A limited number of printed copies will be available at the Welcome Center–while supplies last!



Celebrating the Construction Launch

Many Hope Church members and friends were present to celebrate the launch of our construction project on June 12. Dan Joldersma assembled this video for anyone who missed the occasion, using his own photography and additions from Greg Olgers. Thanks to both of them for documenting this celebration!

Update from Schematic Design Phase

On March 29, members and friends gathered after 11 a.m. worship to eat pizza–and to see the results of the Schematic Design Phase now nearing completion.

Ann Kansfield, pastor of Greenpoint Church in Brooklyn, New York, was our special guest representing our ministry partners, whose work we plan to support as a part of our capital campaign. Ann described the impact that Hope Church, especially through our youth and their sponsors, has had on Greenpoint’s ministry. She spoke of the optimism and spark of momentum represented by the painting of a fence during a summer service trip; she described their need to expand their food service kitchen, from which they feed 700 hungry people each week.

Lois Maassen described the Schematic Design work just complete. It’s a multi-disciplinary process involving the architects and electrical, structural, acoustical, and mechanical engineers; many Hope Church members participated in providing more detail about our vision. This phase is iterative work: design concepts sparked by requirements are checked for code or structural implications and then to confirm whether costs are in line with expectations. During this phase, we learned that what we’d like to accomplish for accessibility, hospitality and welcoming, sustainability, and flexibility will cost more than our target. There was a small amount of “scope creep” as we detailed our needs (especially in audio/visual systems). The bulk of the increased expense is due to the complexity of our building: Our lack of continuous attics or basements makes installation of heating, cooling, and fire suppression systems difficult. And finally, building inside the current courtyard, while it will help with sustainability by eliminating three long exterior walls, is a challenge.

Jim VanderMolen, architect from Elevate Studio, then presented the plans as currently envisioned.

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Inside the facility, Jim reviewed the evolutions since the previous version shared with the congregation. Principal changes included the east entrance to the sanctuary from the Gathering Area, opening the hallway to the youth room from the memorial garden entrance, and the addition of an exterior door to allocate storage-room space to outdoor maintenance supplies and equipment.

Floor Plan_onlyAnd finally, Jim shared renderings of interior spaces, noting that colors, materials, and finishes are at this point only suggestive, not specified.

Chapel Interior_SM

The rendering above shows the rose window at the south end of the chapel. The ceiling is contoured in both directions, reminiscent of canopies and tents. The niches on the left result from our existing architecture and can hold candles, sculptures, or flowers. The wall to the right is the storage shown on the floorplan–for chairs and tables or other furnishings when they’re not in use.


This view of the Gathering Area is from the east-side entrance. From left to right, you can see the existing gallery wall; an additional conversational space outside of the chapel; the entry of the chapel; the hallway with the nursery door visible at the end; the glass wall of the reception area of the administrative offices; bookshelves as one option for a more accessible library collection; and then the existing hallway to the education wing and entry to Commons II.

Sam Martin, on behalf of the Living Hope Capital Campaign team, provided an update on progress to date and thinking about next steps. At this moment, we’ve received pledges from about a quarter of members; those who haven’t yet pledged (or those who’d like to reconsider their commitments) are encouraged to prayerfully consider their support. The end of May is the timeframe that will inform decision-making, but pledges received earlier are helpful to understanding our prospects. Sam outlined a number of additional possibilities for resources, including grants, rebates (especially for energy), and fundraising for specific projects.

The next step in the process is for Consistory, at a June meeting, to discern the scope of project to which we’d like to commit, given what we know about available resources.

There were a number of questions asked; while the meeting was not recorded, we’ll look to answer some of them in future posts at this website. If you have additional questions or comments, you can use this contact form or contact the church office or Lois Maassen.






Insight into Sustainability

Peter Boogaart, Hope Church’s long-time (and recently “retired”) leader of Caring for Creation, was interviewed recently by the Michigan Land Use Institute. The resulting article provides some food for thought about the context within which Hope Church seeks to improve the environmental sustainability of our facility.

It’s also a reminder that good stewardship of shared natural resources can be seen as a social justice issue, both for current and future generations.

Read the full article here, at the Michigan Land Use Institute’s website.