A Welcoming New Lobby for Neland Avenue CRC

For many years Neland Avenue CRC had struggled with traffic flow and lobby space. Many different suggestions and solutions were offered and the congregation looked at lots of different possibilities for how to improve access into the building and the ability for people to socialize before and after services. In late 2019 the church decided to move forward on a project with Elevate Studios to forge a new lobby space that would also function as a meeting facility and a new primary entrance into the building. Because of a small footprint and being landlocked onto a city block in the heart of Grand Rapids the congregation was forced to make hard choices about what space they would use and what space they would leave for parking.

As the shape of the new addition came into focus, Elevate brought in HAV Design to assist with the technology design for the new facility. At the same time the church also needed to make some updates into their sanctuary technology. HAV Design worked with the church, Elevate, and the rest of the design team to put together new AV technologies to assist their live streaming from the sanctuary while also tying in the new space with the existing AV systems.

AV Designed for Functionality and Different Types of Meetings

A strong emphasis in the project was that not only should the place look nice when it is done it also must be very functional and have the ability to accommodate many different types of meetings. HAV Design, led by principal and owner Tim Hamilton, worked with the group to develop a flexible AV solution that installed multiple displays at different locations around the addition and also a primary projected display for larger groups in meetings. At the same time new wiring was installed to better facilitate the ability to plug in cameras and other video sources so that the live stream of services could be further enhanced.

Using the QSC Q-Sys control platform in conjunction with video over IP solutions from Visionary Solutions the new system within the space allows the church to do everything they had hoped that they could. “We love the space,” remarked Tim Lautenbach the building committee chair and primary point person for the church during the project. “HAV design was helpful and very responsive to all of our needs throughout the project.”

Keeping the Project on-track Through a Pandemic

Because the project was started before covid-19 and then paused in the midst of covid-19, it had many products that needed to be updated and several points along the way in which things started and stopped. Keeping consistency through the project was very tricky and required a lot of time and effort to keep up with the various changes and needs that were required to make the project to success.

The end result though is worth all the effort. The space is both functional and complementary to the existing building and everyone loves it!