The general directions in which church design trends are developing or changing in 2017 reflect the primary things people are looking for in their church: not only a place to worship, but also a place to fellowship and connect with others. And parents want a safe place for their children to play and build relationships while learning about the Lord. It’s vital that they entrust their children to trustworthy, conscientious volunteers. With main streets blooming, communities want a church that represents them—locally.
1. A Place to Connect and Relax
Churches are no longer just built to house the worship service, but also as a place to slow down and connect with others while having coffee together. Church lobbies are no longer locations for simply information booths; they are now places decked out much like Starbucks with Wi-Fi, stand up tables and cozy chairs fit for a good read. Fellowship and connection are critical to a healthy church body and the trend is to provide comfortable, inviting space for church members to connect within the church walls. Architects are designing spaces that are even one-third the size of the worship center—for fellowship! Acts 2:42 states, “And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers.”
2. A Place for Children to Play
Churches are building either indoor or outdoor play areas for their children. Some play areas are connected to cozy coffee spaces so parents can watch their kids play while relaxing with friends. In communities where good play spaces are not readily available for children, churches are providing a safe place for their community’s kids to develop friendships. It’s a great way to reach out to the neighborhood families with your resources, and popular with parents and children alike.
3. A Safe Place
With the increase in shootings and terror attacks, churches are incorporating security technology to monitor indoor and outdoor traffic, secure entrances, protect church staff offices and especially monitor and protect children. Churches give strong consideration to the safety of their church members as they draft new building plans. This is a direct reflection of the culture in which we live and paramount to the peace and safety of church members. Children’s safety is one of the biggest concerns for parents today, so many churches build a central security check-in area, which makes parents feel secure in knowing their child is safe at church.
4. A Multisite Church Opportunity
The big church auditoriums aren’t being built at the rate they were back in the 1990s and 2000s. Instead, churches justify creating a standardization of their programs and offer them in multiple locations. People love choices, so why not build to provide community members the choice of locations for your services? And the fact that smaller facilities offered in multiple locations offer a more intimate community experience than the larger auditorium seems appealing to today’s culture. Service formats, student ministries and even church décor often match multisite churches for standardization. In a sense, they duplicate the DNA of the base church in several locations.
5. A Modern Look
While churches used to be built with curves and rounded edges within, they are now more apt to use grids and angled lines. The modern look of today’s church constructions are clean, straight lines with uncluttered open spaces.
6. A Place with Natural Beauty and Light
No longer are black-box, windowless buildings being built with stage lights and productions in mind, but rather, churches are incorporating windows and taking advantage of the natural beauty around their properties. Some even create spaces in which to gather outdoors to worship on occasion.
7. A Place of Common Ground
Just as people love to buy local, they desire church to be in and for the community. Churches are providing creative opportunities to bring the community into their spaces throughout the week. The coffee area becomes a place remote workers can come and use the Wi-Fi during the work week. Local businesses may even opt to use church space for training events and meetings if the church is built in a fashion to accommodate their needs—now, that’s a creative way to reach out to those who may otherwise never darken the door to a church. And who knows, maybe they will come back for a service.
Every trend is not for every church, but some of the trends may just strike a note within you as you begin building your church. We invite you to contact Churches By Daniels to learn more about our church design and construction services.