Restoration Over time, churches, like other buildings, frequently start to experience structural problems that need to be addressed, or they can be damaged by fire or water.  Finding professionals – both architects and contractors - that really understand how these priceless buildings were built, and even more importantly, how to restore them without causing further damage, can be incredibly challenging.  At Harbinson Architects, we have been working for over 35 years on these types of projects, partnering with our clients not only designing the necessary improvements, but also helping to bring and supervise the construction talent necessary for these types of jobs – whether that means specialist fire restoration firms,  stone masons from Italy, woodcarvers from England, or lighting and acoustical experts here in the U.S.  We also often help our clients in their capital raising campaigns, meeting frequently with the senior clergy and patrons to raise necessary financing.  By bringing all of these talents together , we have been able to save the beauty and history of some of the Country’s most iconic churches, including St. John the Divine, Trinity Church and Riverside Church in New York, Centenary Church in Winston Salem, North Carolina and The Cathedral of the Incarnation in Garden City, New York.

Renovation The challenge in church renovations, particularly older or historic churches, is seamlessly accommodating modern amenities in a traditional context.  We modify the structure to bring increased functionality of the worship and auxiliary spaces that reflect the needs of our more modern society and community needs while still respecting the buildings and Faith’s historical roots.  As with our restoration projects, while we always try and develop a long term master plan with our clients, we frequently break these projects into different phases to better manage both the disruption to the community as well as to phase fundraising efforts over a multi-year period.  Like our restoration projects, when asked we also help our clients with their capital campaigns, bringing some of our experience of what we have seen work – and perhaps more importantly, doesn’t work, in these fundraising projects.  But to sum up our philosophy on Church renovations, we say our goal is to make it appear that we were never there and nothing has really changed, it’s just better.