We will soon be starting construction at the Arizona Avenue lobby area. There are five factors that require the extensive repairs to the Arizona Avenue entryway.
- The foundation has sunk to the point where the doors cannot be opened. We have exhausted all the temporary repair options and need to do the engineer-determined work to rebuild the foundation on that part of the building and replace the doors.
- The windows next to the doors have not been maintained properly. They are wooden-framed and need to be scraped, sanded, and painted annually, which is costly and therefore has not been done. The window frames have deteriorated beyond repair. We are replacing them with a metal-framed unit that will not require as much maintenance. The new windows will be double-glazed which will meet current environmental standards for maintaining a consistent temperature.
- We have invested in a beautiful Garden of Eternity but it is under-used and not visible to people who come to our church. While we have the area under construction, we are adding a glass doorway into the Garden so it becomes a used and loved quiet place for our members to use.
- By doing the foundation and door work we are now required to make the Arizona entrance accessible to current legal standards for those living with disabilities; of course we want to be fully accessible and we gladly want to meet current standards so that people who use wheelchairs and other mobility devices have full access to at least the ground floor of Forbes Hall, like abled-bodied people do.
- Income from rentals of Forbes Hall and the upstairs classrooms has become an important component of our annual budget. These rentals are also an important part of our service to the community. It is not safe to use the upstairs rooms when the Arizona exit is not operable, according to fire codes.
We have close to $1 million in savings, some of which is designated for capital repairs exactly such as this.
We have waited several years past when we knew we needed to do these repairs, and during that time the costs of materials and labor have gone up significantly, and are rising monthly. We are now waiting to see when we can anticipate receiving the materials that we need to complete the job. If all goes well, the project should be finished by our in-gathering this fall.