It’s amazing how many steps there are to building a building. We learn so much every single meeting! For example, we are finished with “schematic design” (finished about 2 months ago), which is where the location and sizes of various rooms and parts of the building are decided. We are now in “design development,” which is where details get decided, such as what flooring will be in this room, how big the AC system needs to be for this space, how big the windows will be here, where the built-in bookcases will go and where we will have filing cabinets, etc.

A lot of the cost details are worked out during this phase of the project. For example, if we know that we want a certain kind of high-cost flooring in this room, we know that we can balance out that cost with less expensive flooring in another part of the building. If we know that we want new chairs in the chapel, we know that we will be able to re-use chairs that we already own in the adult classrooms. Fitting in to the budget overall is a challenging task, one that is made up of many seemingly small decisions. Design development is a major place that these choices get made.

The next several meetings of the building committee will be aimed at getting a lot of these details nailed down. Last meeting, for example, only the ‘furnishings and finishes’ portion of the group met. They have a lot of work to do at this stage, so they are planning for a special meeting in another couple of weeks just to work on flooring, wall colors, and furniture.