St. Paul's Episcopal Church

The existing structure was built in 1949 in a residential neighborhood in Indianapolis, Indiana.  As the church grew, it expanded its facilities, adding offices, classrooms, and parking to the north.  This meant that the original main entrance, which faced south, was seldom used.  For this renovation in 2007, the architect's design turned the nave 180 degrees in order to create a larger worship space and connect both old and new facilities to the nave. This has created an entrance to the worship space that is welcoming and convenient to the rest of the campus. The renovation also added parish facilities and classrooms, as well as a cloister and courtyard. 

 

A primary consideration in the design of the expanded worship space was the placement of a new custom hand-crafted organ, which was being built for St. Paul's at the same time the renovation was underway.  The previous organ's location in chambers on the sides of the chancel was considered to be detrimental to its sound; it was determined that the new organ and musical ensembles would be located on the central axis of the nave. 

 

A new bell tower that rises above the surrounding neighborhood and serves as an entry to the growing church campus is part of the design. 

 

Silver Creek Engineering designed all structural systems for the project, including the modified worship area, the addition that will house education and social facilities, and the bell tower.  Silver Creek also performed the site design for the project, which included the integration of a former city street into the proposed church campus.
 

On November 16, 2007, the St. Paul's renovation was topped off, literally, with the placement of a 60 foot copper steeple.  A crowd of church members, neighbors, and media crews gathered to watch as a crane placed the steeple on top of the new belltower just before sunset.

Arched Walkway

Arched Walkway

This is the arched walkway under construction. It connects the sanctuary to other areas on the campus.

Cover of American Organist June 2008

Cover of American Organist June 2008

The custom hand-crafted organ that was a focal point of the 2007 renovation was featured on the cover of the June 2008 issue of American Organist.

New Truss For St. Paul's Church

New Truss For St. Paul's Church

St. Paul's Episcopal Church

St. Paul's Episcopal Church

The exterior of the church during the renovation process.

Arches for St. Paul's

Arches for St. Paul's

The arches prior to construction.

St. Paul's Classroom Addition

St. Paul's Classroom Addition

St. Paul's New Belltower

St. Paul's New Belltower

This is the belltower before the steeple was added.

New Window

New Window

The Steeple at St. Paul's

The Steeple at St. Paul's

Putting finishing touches on the steeple.

The Steeple at St. Paul's

The Steeple at St. Paul's

A crane was used to lift and lower the new copper steeple.

The Steeple at St. Paul's

The Steeple at St. Paul's

The sunset makes a beautiful background as the copper steeple is lowered into place.

The Steeple at St. Paul's

The Steeple at St. Paul's

Workers guide the steeple into position.

The Steeple at St. Paul's

The Steeple at St. Paul's

Neighbors, congregation members, and media turned out to watch as the new belltower is crowned with a copper steeple.

When the congregation at St. Paul's Episcopal Church decided to expand their boundaries, it wasn't the roadblocks that concerned them, it was the road!  A dead-end block of West 61st Street in Indianapolis divided the existing church buildings and threatened plans for a unified campus.  In a rare move, however, city authorities allowed the church to assume ownership of the former street site. 

This did create a few problems, one being that the church needed a new address, since the old one no longer existed.  Formerly located at 10 W. 61st Street, St. Paul's Episcopal Church can now be found (in the same place) at 6050 N. Meridian Street.

 

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