Despite the social unrest during this time, the Immaculata Church Project continues to make progress.
In January, we saw the steel package begin taking form in the basement with installation of the Nave floor beams moving east to west. On site, a 100-ton crane carries a pre-planned sequence of beams across the open basement footprint for steel workers to install. Only a minimal amount of days have delayed the project due to wind and weather with the project remaining closely on schedule.
The initial concrete phase begins to wrap up as workers have been on site since October. The last portions of the southern basement walls are complete with the altar-wall being successfully placed to support the heavy load of the altar later in construction. The last two building pads in the basement have also been poured accounting for several hundred yards of concrete being placed within just a few weeks.
With the initial concrete work wrapping up, and steel work in full swing, ancillary projects are also underway. The backfill dirt work has began on the west side, as well as on the north side. The backfill allows for better site management, especially with water runoff control and closer access for steel cranes to swing heavier steel into place. City utilities continue to be installed and are nearing initial completion.
Not only is the site making visible progress but the design team, architects, and engineers are making substantial progress. Decisions made in 2018 and 2019 are now visible on site, while decisions being made today will be seen later this year and into 2022.
Long lead times are required due to the scope of this church project. Even finishing phases such as the liturgical painting, organ and audio systems, and pew designs are being carefully weighed with continuous meetings, discussions, and in-person tours.
What is the longest lasting, lowest maintenance, authentically Catholic church pew system that fits within the budget? Will this material begin to break down or warp in 20 years time – or will it allow for extreme longevity and use over the next 200 300 years? How can we successfully orchestrate dozens of trades coming together to finish over 65,000 square feet of space within a tight time frame while producing a long lasting inspiring space to pray and worship God?
Dozens of questions like these are considered carefully during the design process that requires each phase, each trade, and each system to all come together in a way that the faithful won’t notice but rather will support them in their ability to lift their heart and soul to God.
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