Thanks to the unsolicited generosity of our community, we were already off to a good start. Thank you to everyone who has contributed so far. Mayor Sciarra also reallocated $79,000 of ARPA funding that had originally been awarded to BOMBYX for kitchen updates to be redirected to support the implementation of new fire detection and suppression systems.
While we won’t have an accurate picture of the costs involved until engineering studies have been completed, we anticipate that together the four projects outlined will cost approximately $400,000. You will find a summary of the projects below, and we invite prospective donors who are interested in learning more to come for a visit.
Churches have long been exempt from sprinkler systems requirements, however, the city has recently determined that our mixed use as an arts center necessitates the installation of automatic sprinklers throughout the building. The project begins with an engineering study to design the system and determine how to connect a new main line to the city water supply, as our current line does not support the capacity needed for sprinklers. Once the design is complete, we will excavate some portion of the parking lot in order to trench a new line. Sprinklers will then be installed in three phases throughout each section of the building, beginning with the Sanctuary. The installation will also accelerate other renovations (e.g. bathrooms, drop ceiling removal) that must be completed before the sprinklers can be put in place.
Our current system is more than 20 years old and the technology has changed. We need new detectors and a more sophisticated centralized system that can override sound and lighting in the Sanctuary in the case of an emergency.
New bathrooms have long been on our renovation list, but now they must be completed prior to the sprinkler installation in the center section of the building. New bathrooms will provide more capacity, improved privacy, accessibility, and an overall better experience for patrons. They will be situated closer to the Sanctuary in a more centralized location.
There are two goals in this area: (1) Soundproofing to mitigate noise transmission from the sanctuary to the surrounding neighborhood; and (2) improving the interior acoustics of the sanctuary, particularly for higher volume performances (e.g. percussion and electric instruments).
We recently finished installing central air conditioning throughout the building and we already have a project underway to insulate and reduce sound transmission through the walls of the sanctuary. The next step requires a custom high-tech solution to preserve the historic stained glass windows while preventing sound from escaping through them.