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  Zion Lutheran Church, Page 46Zion Lutheran Church
Cornerstone Design•Architects
320 Granite Run Drive, Lancaster, PA 17601

Leola, Pennsylvania
Total Square Feet: 22,371
Construction Period: Sep 2000 to May 2001

Construction Team
General Contractor: Horst Construction - 320 Granite Run Drive, Lancaster, PA 17601
Structural Engineer: Greenebaum Structures, P.C. - 26-28 Market Square, #2, Manheim, PA 17545
Cost Estimator: John Kerchner, PE - 320 Granite Run Drive, Lancaster, PA 17601

When Zion Lutheran Church needed to build a larger, more contemporary and energy-efficient facility to replace the church building they occupied since the late 19th century, they chose Lancaster, Pennsylvania design-build partners Cornerstone Design-Architects and Horst Construction to help. The new building would be situated on a site that shared an existing cemetery owned by the church, but not at the original church#s site. The church presented a challenge to the design team. Their original vision included a sanctuary to seat 500 and 18 classrooms, but their existing budget was not able to stretch far enough. So, the Cornerstone/Horst team met with the building committee and began the programming process that served to identify Zion Lutheran Church's immediate needs and a plan for future expansion. 

The church needed to determine construction systems that would save significant dollars to meet their goals. This prompted Cornerstone Design-Architects and Horst Construction to investigate a more cost effective structural system that would meet the current fire codes. A wood frame with a one-hour protected panelized system spanned by long span wood trusses was selected. 

Further programming efforts resulted in 13 classrooms for adult Christian education, youth activity space, a nursery, a large multipurpose fellowship hall to serve the church's banquets, theatrical and gymnasium needs, a sanctuary to seat 360 people with a large chancel area for a bell choir, alter, pulpit, a modest size choir loft, and a large narthex.

In addition to gaining the functional elements, the congregation felt that it was critical to preserve the heritage of their original church building. The congregation wanted the new church to be modern without losing the traditional elements that were prevalent in the former church. The design team recommended using symbolism to evoke a sense of Christian tradition.

Out of several discussions with the building committee, a floor plan emerged based on a Square-Celtic Cross (a square cross superimposed on a circle). The cross represents Christ's crucifixion and the circle represents eternity. The center of the cross became the narthex from which all other activities of the church radiated. This design provided the church with a central social space separate from other dedicated spaces, while enabling direct circulation to other activities within the building.

The use of stained glass advanced the church's desire to maintain traditional church elements within their new building. Christian symbols were depicted in stained glass throughout the sanctuary. This use of traditional elements was further enhanced by the reuse of existing stained glass windows from the old church. A stained glass window of the Virgin Mary holding the baby Jesus was used outside the door to the nursery. Another window, of Christ as the Shepherd, was used between the entrances to the sanctuary, symbolizing the free grace and love of Christ as he shepherds his flock. In all, nine stained glass panels were reclaimed from the original church.

The design team of Cornerstone Design-Architects and Horst Construction is proud that Zion Lutheran Church serves as an excellent example of the quality in design and construction that comes from intense participation from the client and determination and creativity from the design and construction team. It is a testament to quality construction on a limited budget and the value of the design-build process.

DIV 07: EIFS: Senergy.
DIV 08: Coiling Counter Shutters: Clopay Building Products; Wood Windows: Andersen Windows.
DIV 09: Drywall: National Gypsum; Metal Studs: Dietrich Industries; Vinyl: AZROCK, Armstrong ExcelonTM; Cove: Johnsonite; Carpet: Patcraft.
DIV 10: Operable Partitions: Modernfold.

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