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  • Ripley Chapel Renovations: April Status Report

    The Ripley Chapel Working Group has been working for the past six months to develop the final design for the chapel renovations. In December we re-engaged Torrey Architecture, Inc. to work with us to complete the final design and develop construction ready plans. In January we added Kaplan Construction as our tentative general contractor in a design/build approach to the project. By late February we had settled on a final design concept and detailed plans and cost estimates were underway.

    In early March we received detailed cost estimates for our design. Unfortunately the costs projected were far higher than expected and well above our budget of $500,000. This creates a challenge since our design already had taken pains to trim down a number of features in order to keep to our budget. We had determined that the costs of air conditioning and replacing the stained glass with clear glass were too high and would impair our ability to have some of the other key features we are seeking. We even reduced the number of new clear glass windows from earlier designs.

    Kaplan Construction explained to us that the region’s robust construction market and our goal of construction during the summer months were a significant reason for the high cost estimates. But even allowing for this, it is clear that this plan is beyond our budget.

    The Working Group has decided to take a pause in our work with Torrey and Kaplan while we scrutinize the wealth of information they have generated for us and to consult with some other experts. We remain energized about the vision of a renovated Ripley and the opportunity it will give us to explore, express and expand the ways we worship God and welcome our neighbors. We are confident that the Holy Spirit is with us in this endeavor and that a renewed and vital Ripley Chapel (within budget) will be the outcome. 

    In faith, the Ripley Chapel Working Group:

    —Bruce Alexander, (project leader), Laurie Roby, Carolyn Plosky, Rev. Will Burhans, Rev. Judy Arnold, Jane Ring Frank, and, ex-officio, Penny Sparrow (Church Moderator).