May 14, 2021
First up, I want you to hear from our building committee. Exciting progress…
SHINE PROJECT UPDATE
It’s been a couple of months since our last update on the status of our new church building project. The Building Committee and Church Staff have been working diligently on behalf of our congregation and we are pleased to share this update.
We are making progress on Township approvals and Environmental clearances. Per request, we recently attended a meeting with the Lower Nazareth Township Board of Commissioners to discuss the project and the dedication of right of way, which went very well. We also continue to coordinate with the Township of Bethlehem to receive final plan approval. We are waiting to receive technical review comments from the Northampton County Conservation District (NCCD) on our site design and are hopeful to receive comments by the end of May. Assuming we receive them by the end of May, we should be able to start earthwork (shovel in the ground!) by the middle of August. This allows time after receipt of NCCD comments to incorporate any stormwater management comments and apply for permits and record the permits with Bethlehem Township. Assuming 12 to 14 months for construction, we should be worshipping in our new church building in the Fall of 2022!
Concurrently, the architects are completing the details of the building design with input and feedback from the Building Committee and Grace Church staff. Decisions are being made on interior layout, finishes, lighting, audio visual design, Memorial Garden, information systems, security system and other necessary elements of the building and the site. Final design and construction drawings are expected to be completed by the middle to latter part of June
Sometime in the June/July timeframe Serfass, our construction manager will be developing a Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP) for the project. As you may read and hear, construction materials have been rising steadily over the past year, due the pandemic, and labor and materials have been in short supply. The Building Committee, Mann-Hughes (architects), Serfass and Collier (site engineers – formerly named Maser) are all working on value engineering alternatives so that we can minimize any impact from rising material costs while maintaining the beauty and function of our new church. We will have an updated project budget once the GMP is completed sometime in July.
As we continue to move forward, we should all be reminded of the power of prayer! Please pray for timely comments from NCCD, good decision making as the building design is completed, a turn in the direction of material costs, for effective coordination in moving towards construction start and a favorable GMP process resulting in an affordable building cost! It’s important to remember and believe that God’s got this!
This Sunday, we will be celebrating graduating seniors at GRACE. Our Next Generation Director, Taylor Shade, will be preaching, “Pass the Faith”. In all the services, we will recognize our High School Seniors. What a privilege to “pass the faith” to the next generation. You won’t want to miss this Sunday morning
IMPORTANT SUNDAY ANNOUNCEMENT
The staff and our COVID team have been working on new Sunday protocols and relaunching some of our favorite Sunday Morning experiences. I’ll have a big announcement next week. What a joy to see COVID numbers improve…
Mark and I will be watching and cheering on our GRACE graduates from North Carolina on Sunday as our daughter, Anna, graduates from Wake Forest University on Sunday afternoon.
Your Pastor and Friend,
Dr. Marnie Crumpler, Senior Pastor