Where The Solution Begins
Once you’ve assembled a qualified design team, it’s time to begin working. It is not, however, the time to begin drawing, but rather, to start discussing the goals of the process. Undoubtedly, one of the goals is to design and build a functional space. Or is it?
Before setting any other goals for the process, everyone must understand and agree why this facility is being built.
• Why is the building needed?
• What is its function?
• What kinds of activities will take place in it?
• Can you live without it? If yes, then why build it? If no, then why not?
• What if you feel you need more than you can afford?
By answering these questions carefully in the beginning, many design team conflicts that arise later in the process will automatically resolve themselves.
Once a clear path is established and the design team understands the ministry goals and program, design work can begin.
Again, the majority of the design team should be included in the initial stages of this effort. Once the design work is underway, team members will have varying levels of design input throughout the process.
If the team works together well and has the ability to focus on the ministry goals, the design process can almost even be a pleasant one.
Building A Room For Good Sound
Because room size, shape and finishes determine the acoustics, these factors must be carefully weighed and considered during the architectural design of the room.
In addition, we can break the room apart and look at several distinct but interrelated acoustical environments. These environments include the main seating area, the platform or stage area, any under balcony or upper balcony seating areas, transepts and overflow seating areas. Each of these areas merits careful study.
Remember, the acoustics design should be driven by the ministry goals and program. For example, most of today’s contemporary worship churches need a fairly controlled acoustical environment for preaching and for sound reinforcement of vocals and contemporary worship instruments.