By Claire Harlin
The Solana Beach Presbyterian Church will soon be putting a new face forward, with a $12 million renovation that includes a new chapel that will be visible from Stevens Avenue and Lomas Santa Fe.
“Right now you enter the sanctuary from the middle of the property and you don’t see the front of the church from the street, only the back side,” said church operations director Paul Gunther. “We want to give a new face to the community so we will be more welcoming and inviting.”
The church broke ground in early February and will formally kick off the renovation during its 8:45 and 10:30 a.m. Sunday services on Feb. 10.
The construction also includes a new 17,000-square-foot children’s facility, the second floor of the preschool building has been torn down to make way for the new building.
The efforts follow a remodel last year that included moving the church’s preschool to the corner of Stevens Avenue and Rodolfo Drive, and church-goers are enjoying their first year in those new facilities. In December, the church obtained permits for the renovation that just began on the upper campus.
Both project phases are part of a larger master plan, a vision that dates back about a decade, Gunther said. There will be future phases planned to take place between 2016 and 2020 and estimated to cost about $20 million.
According to the church’s website, the renovations are fulfilling a critical need to replace existing facilities for children in order to reach the next generations. The church’s Sunday school attracts about 450 children per week, and about 100 mothers and their pre-school children attend bi-weekly Friday morning sessions. The pre-school serves more than 200 children a week, according to the site.
Another priority is to provide new and improved facilities for the Hispanic Ministry, which attracts about 110 individuals, according to the church site.
“The goal is to bring the whole church to be one unified facility,” Gunther said.
For frequently asked questions and more information on the church’s renovation efforts, visit www.solanapres.org.