Davie Street Presbyterian Church Expansion High-Level Plans

Davie Street Presbyterian Church. April 2018.

I found myself walking down Person Street one day and saw an excavator hacking at the Davie Street Presbyterian Church. As I do, I was curious what work was going on at this corner of east downtown.

From submitted plans on the city’s website, it looks like the church is adding to their location. With a small back room being demolished, new space will be added here and throughout some of the surface parking lot along Person Street.

Map of the new addition for Davie Street Presbyterian.

Map of the new addition for Davie Street Presbyterian. Click for larger.

The churches in downtown have done a great job, probably the best job, of keeping their additions within character while using modern materials so I expect this new addition to match nicely with the historic sanctuary. Of course, I love to see surface parking eaten up for more people-centric uses.

Rendering the new addition for Davie Street Presbyterian.

Rendering the new addition for Davie Street Presbyterian. Click for larger.

Rendering the new addition for Davie Street Presbyterian.

Rendering the new addition for Davie Street Presbyterian. Click for larger.

P.S. I have a growing affinity for the architecture of some of the churches in East Raleigh. It mainly comes from these crenulated towers. I’d love to work with someone with a better eye and love of Raleigh history to tell a story behind these. Examples include Gethsemane True Vine Holiness Church, Revelation Missionary Baptist Church, and Rush Metropolitan AME Zion.

Christ Church Expansion Completed on Edenton Street

Christ Church along Edenton Street.

I’ve been a little behind on posting about completed projects so expect a few of those over the coming weeks.

The Christ Church expansion looks to be completed, at least from the outside. The new accessible entrance and meeting spaces were built over some of the surface parking at the corner of Edenton and Blount Streets.

Christ Church along Edenton Street.

The expansion maintained the stone, exterior look of the historic church and while it takes a sharp eye to notice the difference, I bet once there’s a little wear on the exterior, it’ll match the historic parts of the church.

In the photo above, the addition starts at the stairwell behind the tree in the center and goes to the left. The new addition adds rooms for a library, parlor, kitchen, and other amenities, according to the proposed floor plan on their website.

Christ Church Expanding along Edenton Street

Construction site of the future Christ Church expansion.

Construction site of the future Christ Church expansion. Click for larger.

Along East Edenton Street, Christ Church will be expanding, eating up some of the surface parking lot that’s behind the church. The groundbreaking was this week and removal of the asphalt is already underway. A sign on the fencing shows a rendering, drawn up by Raleigh-based Clearscapes, of the new hall.

I’m always a fan of anyone removing surface parking. Christ Church members will probably be using the surface lots across the street which are far from full on nights and weekends. It will be fun to watch this new construction take place and see how it meshes with the historic sanctuary, which opened on January 4, 1854.

Rendering of the Christ Church expansion.

First Presbyterian Church Building For The Future

If you haven’t noticed already, the First Presbyterian Church on the corner of Morgan and Salisbury Streets has leveled their education center and construction is underway for the replacement. Why the need to destroy such an old and historic building? The good people of the church tell us why right on their site:

The main driver behind this ambitious construction and renovation project was the deteriorating condition of our “Old Education Building,” the part of our property that housed our library and some Sunday School classrooms. After a period of neglect, the building reached an unsafe state a few years ago. We no longer ventured into some of its scarier sections. Our Building and Grounds Committee raised a concern several years ago that portions of the building were subject to being condemned by the city and constituted a hazard.

Not only is the education building being replaced but the sanctuary is being heavily renovated as well. The sanctuary has been up since 1900 but the congregation goes back as far as 1818, meeting in buildings either on or around Capitol Square until the present day building was erected. While the present day capitol building was being constructed, the North Carolina Supreme Court used to hold meetings in the church’s session house from 1831-1840.

The renovation and design work was done by Frank Harmon Architect PA. Some may recognize that name as they are the firm that designed the NCAIA building that is now being built on Peace Street. The firm has designed a master plan for the church and their complex along Salisbury Street. From this press release:

According to Frank Harmon, FAIA, his firm is working on a plan that will unite the different elements of the campus, provide open green space within the campus, introduce principles of environmentally sustainability, and improve the property’s accessibility, which features a five-foot grade change.

The project will also involve replacing the current two-story educational building with a three-story structure (including basement), The new building will feature such “green” elements as a vegetated roof, an abundance of natural light and ventilation through atria and window placement, a geothermal heating/cooling system (or ground source heat pumps), and rainwater collection cisterns. Materials used will be locally available and, wherever possible, recycled.

Expect all the renovation and construction to be complete around Summer 2012. You can also catch a small rendering of the new building on Frank Harmon’s website.

Time Capsule Buried In Downtown Raleigh

Next to the sidewalks of Salisbury Street, there is this plaque on the ground that states the following:





The church is on the corner of Salisbury and Morgan Streets if anyone is interested in looking for it. 2076 is quite a ways out so pass this along to your kids so that they can see it being opened on our country’s 300th birthday.