Capital Campaign Progress Update
Beginning in the fall of 2016, our church property will undergo significant transformation as we engage Phase Two of our capital campaign project. This project will affect the large grassy area in front of our administration building and the second parking strip off Providence Rd. Our Capital Campaign Ministry Team will post frequent updates on this page, with the most recent appearing at the top.
September 12, 2017
Work on Trinity’s new “front door” continues! We are approximately at the halfway point as of the end of August. Here are updates on each part of the project:
Parking lot – Demolition and excavation work is complete, including stripping and recycling gravel from the original parking lot. Curbing is underway, and the next step is gravel and paving. We did not have sufficient gravel from stripping and recycling, so we will have to purchase approximately 500 more tons of gravel at a cost of about $14,000.
Underground infrastructure – The water, gas, storm water, and electrical conduits were all part of original church construction. The CCCC decided, due to the age of the original components, to replace them all. We also installed a new water shut-off valve and gas line. These replacements, while adding about $20,000 in extra cost to the project, will last for decades and keep us from having to tear up and repair parts of our new parking lot to fix them.
Footings – In anticipation that additional funding would be available to complete the covered entryway, we decided to spend the money to pour the footings now, while we had the permit. This way, we will not have to dig up the new parking lot when we are ready to add the covering. This added about $6,000 in extra costs – but again, it will save Trinity money in the long run.
Columbarium – The brick and mortar instructions have been selected, and we chose to have the mason build a mock-up to test the look. You can find the mock-up next to the first set of stairs off the front of the sanctuary – please take a look at it. We were able to secure limestone for facing and caps at the same price point. Construction should begin soon, provided the rain stops!
Sidewalks – We met with the contractor and finalized placement for all new sidewalks. You will notice many low curbs to facilitate easy access. We also widened the sidewalk to the breezeway entrance, anticipating this might be a high traffic area, especially at the start and end of school days. We are still working on sidewalk to the Fellowship Hall entrance, as we don’t want to damage the trees.
Landscaping – We have deferred work on landscaping to the fall, to take advantage of the cooler weather.
Back parking lot – In order to meet Urban Forestry guidelines for the city of Charlotte, we will need to plant a couple of trees in newly-created “islands” in our back parking lot. That work should begin in the coming weeks.
Finish Date – The agreement with the contractor is to be finished by September 30th, but with the recent rains the parking lot and columbarium will likely be finished around mid-October.
As always, members of the Capital Campaign Construction Ministry Team are here if you have any questions. Thanks for your patience and prayers!
Chair, Capital Campaign Construction Ministry Team
May 21, 2017
(This update was given at the end-of-church-year picnic following worship)
Thank you to everyone who supported the Capital Campaign. Because of your financial support we have completed HVAC renovations, new sound system for fellowship hall, exterior painting, and column repairs. The remaining work includes the parking and entranceway, Youth Center updates, and Admin Building renovations.
Our team has been hard at work over the past few months preparing for the work that lies ahead. Over several reviews, and with prayer and thoughtful consideration, the Session approved at their April meeting a motion to move forward with the exterior renovations. This move forward was based on:
- How to best use the financial resources
- Stay true to intent of capital campaign and Trinity’s original site plan
- The desire to make Trinity more Welcoming with a clear front door
- Availability of fill dirt
- Interest in a Columbarium (funded independently from the capital campaign).
That said, it is likely that this project will consume the balance of our capital campaign funds. Construction cost inflation and significant costs to comply with City regulations are some of the issues the CCCC have worked through on your behalf. We successfully worked with the City to avoid having to build a storm water retention pond, which would be unattractive but more importantly would have burdened the operating budget in perpetuity with maintenance costs.
The good news is that we have signed a letter of intent with a contractor and are working through the contract terms. Construction is slated to being the week of June 5th. The project includes the following components:
- Demolition and removal of sidewalks and trees in the project area. While we will lose some trees, there will be an overall net increase in trees as we are required to plant replacement trees but also additional trees on the Montclair Avenue side of the property.
- Replacement of storm water piping. The CCCC felt it was important to do this update – why build a new parking lot on top of old piping.
- Reconfiguration of the parking lot adding a U-shaped. This includes elevating the overall area by 2-3 feet by using the fill dirt.
- Construction of a columbarium. It is a curved wall style, similar to what is at St John Episcopal.
- Landscaping including the trees shrubs and electrical wiring for lighting.
We are driving to complete the project by the end of September. Trinity’s new “front door” will make it easier for new members to find and access the good things that are going on here. Thank for your patience and we ask for your prayers as we move forward.
Chair – Capital Campaign Construction Ministry Team
January 18, 2017
We continue to work with the City of Charlotte to meet the needed requirements to begin construction. The good news is that the Inspecting Engineer approved our design. This is a big step forward! The not-so-good news is that the Urban Forestry engineer asked for revisions, namely additional plantings – thus, an additional delay. So we made the requested design changes and resubmitted the design this week. We are confident any subsequent design changes will be minor. The Committee decided to proceed forward with soliciting bids and will distribute the Request for Proposal this week.
Thanks as always for your patience and support. Not much has changed on our property in the past couple of months, but know we are making progress!
January 4, 2017
Happy New Year! As we enter 2017, the design and permitting process for our capital campaign project continues. The City of Charlotte has signed off on key components of the design including Engineering Review, Urban Forestry Review, and Erosion Control. While we have passed a major milestone, the City of Charlotte has not completed final sign off. We monitor status daily and remain confident that we will receive final approval soon.
We have developed the Request for Proposal and bidders instructions. The RFP provides detailed instructions to construction firms on how to price the project. The Capital Campaign Construction Ministry Team also identified, evaluated, and selected four firms from which we will solicit bids. We expect the bids will take four weeks to prepare.
Because of these factors, the construction timetable will be delayed by a few months, with construction being deferred until the spring. The thinking here is to avoid the rainy season while also giving the contractors some flexibility with scheduled work. Both factors should help Trinity get the best price possible, which is important to our ministry team, as we want to be the best stewards of the campaign’s pledged dollars.
As always, we will update you as things progress!
November 23, 2016
Dirt deliveries are complete! The dirt received from Publix should generate significant cost savings for Trinity. We wish to express our gratitude and thanks to Publix for their generous donation. We also want to thank the neighborhood for their understanding and patience during the disruption.
Final designs, the critical path task in the permitting process, were submitted last week to the City. We have worked through regulations surrounding storm water quality and retention, fire truck access, sidewalks, urban forestry, handicap access, as well as anticipated cost issues. Our expectation is that the city will take 4 to 6 weeks to grant final approval.
The next step is to develop a Request for Proposal (RFP). This document along with the finalized design and permits is what contractors use to prepare price quotes. Three firms to date have verbally committed to bid the project. Our intent is to gather multiple quotes and select a finalist based on the best value to Trinity.
We will also begin working on a construction schedule, landscaping designs, and specific projects. The wet, winter season is upon us, so we may choose to delay the start of construction in order to avoid weather-related delays and costs. The CCCC owes the Session a landscape design, which we will work on after the City grants the permits. Lastly, the CCCC believes we can save money if we separately contract for installation of wall wells and tree removal. Wall wells protect and preserve access to the foundation vents and Kevin will do this work. Only the trees in the project area will be affected. The oak trees in front of the Fellowship Hall will NOT be affected.
It’s an exciting time for Trinity and the CCCC thanks everyone for their positive energy, patience, and prayers. From all of us to you, Happy Thanksgiving!
November 15, 2016
The Capital Campaign Construction Committee continues to work through the permitting process with the City of Charlotte. The City has required several design changes including fire lane / fire truck access, sidewalks, and special curbing. These revisions require time for the engineer to update the site design and then resubmit for approval. We hope to have final designs approved soon.
Due to these design revisions and a general concern about the soil quality in the area of the new parking lot, the committee is concerned that we may need additional fill dirt and need a contingency plan. Our plan is to accept additional fill dirt from the Publix site. That said, the current dirt storage locations are at capacity, so we have applied for an additional permit to store dirt in the area behind the rear parking lot near the softball field. The environmental engineering firm will begin installing appropriate controls and fencing this week. Once the permit is approved, dirt delivery will restart.
The CCCC has also been busy pre-calling contractors and lining up potential bids. Our intention is to get bids from at least three firms and then select the construction firm.
October 20, 2016
The dirt delivery is complete! We are grateful to Publix for their donation. We received 800+ truckloads of dirt on our second parking lot strip and on our front lawn. The piles have been covered in straw and seeded per city regulations in order to minimize environmental impact. Just to clarify, the piles are temporary. The dirt will be relocated as part of the grading process of the grassy area. That said, we are in a ‘pause period’ until we complete the permitting process with the city. Once the permits are cleared, we have to update the design and then we can solicit contractor bids.
September 28, 2016
We continue to make progress toward securing the necessary permits from the City. The designs have been submitted and the City has started provide feedback. Our primary focus has been on the necessary permits to receive dirt from Publix, which we expect to be approved by the end of this week.
Site work will begin the week of October 3 starting with utility location and erosion control. A utility location service will find and mark any electrical and gas supply lines. Erosion control regulations require installation of a silt fence, covers around the storm water drains, and fencing around trees. The fence will surround the both the grassy area (between the Fellowship Hall and Sanctuary) and the south side of the second parking lot strip (which was roped off earlier in September).
Once these steps are complete and weather permitting, Publix will commence delivering the dirt. The dirt will be placed on the south side of thesecond parking lot strip in a long, low berm. Dirt deliveries will continue for several weeks. We have reiterated our ask to Publix that they direct their drivers to use the Providence Road entrance / exit in order to minimize noise and disruption in the neighborhood.
Lastly, the committee continues to work on gathering quotes and clarifying designs. We are also coordinating closely with the Buildings and Grounds Ministry Team and the Columbarium committee.
August 29, 2016
We’re excited and thankful to give an update on where we are with the capital campaign construction activities. The theme for today is “anticipation”…as we kick off the next step in campus renovations.
As Dr. Cockrill expressed to us in August 2013, our capital improvement projects were prioritized into phases, based on committee input and Session approval. Phase 1 includes repair and renovate the air conditioning and paint the front entry columns, sanctuary and steeple. Phase 2 includes painting the rest of the buildings; technology and building security; and interior renovations. Phase 3 is primarily about reconfiguring our parking and entranceway. The good news is that Phase 1 – including the HVAC renovation, painting and column repairs is complete. The Capital Campaign has also fully repaid the endowment (these repayments were for air conditioning renovations that preceded that capital campaign).
Before we started work on the renovations to Trinity’s buildings and parking, we established several guiding principles:
- remain true to the feasibility study, congregational comments, and capital campaign materials.
- consider and incorporate Trinity’s founding vision and history.
- make Trinity a comfortable and appealing place to gather as well as worship.
Last summer, with the session’s approval, we hired an architect. We spent the time working with the architect to design the renovations of the administration building, the new entranceway and parking reconfiguration, and the columbarium.
We have encountered and worked through many issues:
- rising costs…construction and material costs have risen as the economy has improved over the last several years.
- unbudgeted costs…we did not fully understand the implications and costs of city ordinances involving storm water and water quality regulations
- the request to incorporate the columbarium…which is technically not part of the capital campaign
The CCCC met with the Session multiple times, in January, March, and June, to review options and receive direction. On June 29th, the Session approved moving forward. So let’s break down what the Session approved and what this means.
The Session approved the Motion to:
- Accept the proposed design from Adams – we wanted and have a unified design for entranceway, renovations, parking lot reconfiguration and columbarium. The design had to be in harmony with our current architectural style. The entranceway needed to be equal parts intuitive and welcoming (click HERE and HERE to see renditions). The parking needed to be done in way to promote accessibility and welcome visitors. We think you will be pleased this results. Please take a few minutes and look at the posters on the round tables.
- Accept dirt from Publix construction site including temporary placement on the campus as needed – this is an important consideration from both a cost and timing perspective. First the dirt, which we will use as fill, is at no cost to Trinity. These costs savings essentially offset rising construction costs. Said a different way, without free dirt it is unlikely we would be do the parking reconfiguration.
- Prioritize construction of the entranceway and parking reconfiguration – The access to the free fill dirt required us to adapt and align our project timeline with the Publix project. What this means is that we are moving construction of the entranceway and parking reconfiguration into Phase 2 and are deferring interior renovations to Phase 3. We felt this was a reasonable trade-off in order to maintain the overall project budget.
- Approve up to $275k in capital campaign funds for constructions of entranceway and parking reconfiguration – This amount is consistent with what was presented with the original campaign materials. The amount includes the direct project costs, as well as the designs (architecture, civil engineering, electoral and electrical) surveys, permit costs, and regulatory compliance. As of June 30, the CCCC has about $245k so it is very important that everyone fulfill their pledges.
- Approve construction of the columbarium – the Columbarium will be built as part of the project. This will save costs by having one deign, one project and one project manager.
- Confirm that columbarium costs will come from other funds and not capital campaign funds – The CCCC felt it was important to clearly articulate that the columbarium will be funded separately.
- Approve up to $125k in additional funds for construction of columbarium – The Session has been working with the Columbarium Committee on funding and will defer specific status updates to them.
- Direct CCCC to work with B&G to develop a landscape plan for project area, including potential use of restricted funds, with a separate motion within 90 days – Since we are reconfiguring parking, city storm water regulation require us to bring our site up to code. This will require additional plantings across the campus. Once the city has approved the permits, we will start working through the details with B&G and the architects.
So, what’s next? When is something actually going to start happening?
The first change will be to close off a section of the front parking lot, starting September 1st. The section to be closed is the second parking lot strip, or the one on the far right as you turn in off of Providence. The “main drag” that runs closest to the church buildings will remain as is. The plan is to strip, remove, and recycle the asphalt and gravel from the second parking lot strip as quickly as possible.
In mid-September we expect to start receiving the first of 1000+ loads of fill dirt to go into the areas where the parking lot has been stripped. Eventually this will be spread out and grassed.We have shared this information proactively with both Weekday School and Phillips Academy so they can plan accordingly. In our conversations with Publix we have asked the trucks to come onto our campus via Providence Rd., rather than through the neighborhood, out of consideration for our neighbors and the traffic flow for our Weekday School and Philips Academy families.
(As an aside, the CATS Park & Go will be discontinued. When our Facilities manager contacted them about moving the sign, they indicated that the current usage of that particular stop did not merit its continuation).
While this is happening, we will solicit and choose the civil engineering and general construction firms.If everything goes according to plan, ‘serious’ construction will start in November and hopefully be finished by February.
We understand this is a significant change to our campus. We believe we have considered both current and future needs. We have spent many hours planning so how to best use our financial resources. While it has taken longer than we thought, we think we have a good plan.
We hope you are as excited as we are. These are good and necessary changes to our property. When done, Trinity church will have a more intuitive welcoming and accessible campus. On behalf of the CCCC, we are looking forward to the opportunity to make Trinity a wonderful place to both worship and gather.
Please check back here for future updates as the project moves forward. The most recent update will be found at the top of the page.