Children’s Building – First United Methodist Church

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New Preschool and Kindergarten Program

Paris, Texas - Completed August, 2000

Located in the historic central business district of Paris, this project was constructed to house a new preschool and kindergarten program. The church planned for the building to be in use in time to coincide with the public schools fall term.

The 9,000 square foot facility includes eight classrooms, a central assembly space and administrative office, and is joined to the basement level of the main church building by a ramped connecting corridor. The project involved extensive site work, including retaining walls, parking lot reconstruction and a large earth fill, as well as considerable remodeling in the existing church building.

Realizing that the budget would not permit the use of the limestone veneers, tile roof and richly carved detailing of the original building, the Owner, nevertheless, expressed great concern that the new building match, as closely as possible, the architectural style of the historic limestone church building. Church members were adamant that the new building blend with, and not detract from, the beauty of the original structure.

A pre-finished, standing seam metal roof, matching the color of the church's clay tile dome was selected to help marry the new building to the original one. The result is a modern building, designed for twenty-first century needs while responding very successfully to its historic neighborhood. The project was designed as Phase One of a long term master plan for the church campus. Considerable time was devoted to alternative solutions, capital fund-raising and other phases of the overall campus development. The children's building itself was designed and drawn in approximately four months. Construction began in the fall of 1999 and was completed in August, 2000, in time for the fall school term.

The project, which also included relocation and upgrading of the church kitchen, was constructed by Charlie Clark Construction Co., under a single, lump-sum contract, at a cost of approximately $109 per square foot.

Denney Architects employed the use of a synthetic plaster exterior wall system as an economical way to recall the classical sculptural detailing of the original structure and to match the color.