Milestone Church, located just north of Fort Worth in Keller, Texas, partnered with GFF Architects for the design of their new permanent home.
The congregation was rapidly outgrowing their temporary shopping center location and desired to build a space with a much stronger presence in the surrounding community. The result is a 70,000 square foot facility, comprised of a 1,500-seat worship center, a bustling community gathering space, administration space and a state-of-the-art children's education wing located on a hilly, wooded 52-acre site.
To facilitate connection to the surrounding community and reinforce the relationship with nearby neighborhoods, the building is positioned adjacent to a community hike and bike trail that is immediately accessible from the large indoor community gathering space and outdoor covered patio.
The goal was to move away from the typical "island church," model which is surrounded by parking lots on all sides, isolated and physically disconnected from the community it serves.
On the west façade of the building, a large, uniquely identifiable entry canopy acts as a beacon to guide visitors and members to the front door. main entry.
The primary exterior materials, sandblasted and stained concrete tilt-up panels with accents of natural wood and stone, have a casual, regional feel. Concrete panels incorporate form liners' during the on-site casting process to create pattern and texture. Tinted transparent stains are utilized in lieu of paint to coat the surface of the panels, allowing the natural qualities of the concrete to be visible while reducing future maintenance expenses for the church.
Once inside, an 11,000 square foot community gathering space, or Commons, includes a café and large indoor play area for children.
The space is open and airy, with expansive views to the green belt and community hike and bike trail. With direct access to surrounding worship and education spaces, the Commons functions as the heart of the campus, encouraging congregants to linger with friends and family.
In addition to Sunday mornings, the commons and café are also capable of hosting banquets and other community events, serving as a modern alternative to the Fellowship Hall.
Milestone Church welcomes thousands of members and guests each week, so interior materials were selected for beauty and durability. Stained concrete floors, wood-paneled walls, and stone accents allow for ease of maintenance, and reinforce the relationship to the building's exterior materials.
Inside the worship center, the neutral tones of paint, flooring materials, and seating fabric create a subtle backdrop to state-of-the-art video and lighting technology. Large LED display panels were selected in lieu of front or rear projection screens.
Color changing LED light fixtures are utilized throughout the space creating an exciting, immersive worship experience. The 1500 seat Worship Center utilizes a combination of floor and stadium seating and includes a removable back wall that will allow for an additional 1000 seats without expanding the building footprint.
The palette for the children's education wing is also neutral with occasional "pops" of color, setting the stage for vibrant wayfinding signage, play equipment, and artwork. Dedicated children's large group rooms with sophisticated audio, video and lighting equipment allow even the youngest churchgoers to experience worship in a fun and dynamic way. The long-term master plan for the campus includes space for new offices, an additional Children's Education building, a Student Ministry building and recreational facilities that will serve the church and surrounding community.
The ultimate goal for the new campus was to create a facility that can effectively foster a growing, Christ-centered community. The design and technology allow Milestone Church to not only meet the needs of its current congregation, but to be positioned to serve the ever-expanding region for generations to come.