Houses of worship were once a centerpiece of community life and a focal point of a community’s architectural landscape. Over the years, however, cultural changes have resulted in less emphasis on houses of worship as centralized pieces of the community, while economic and demographic changes have led to significant changes in or often loss of congregations. Consequently, today’s urban cores have a plethora of abandoned or vacant houses of worship where demolition by neglect is often a significant threat. Buffalo has had amazing success in adapting these kinds of vacant churches for their next lives but there are still challenges. Tour churches that have been transformed from a Christian faith to a mosque, and a Buddhist temple; from a church declining in numbers to a church that retained its worship space while becoming a vibrant center of community life with apartments, a community commercial kitchen, and an event space; a church that was rescued from demolition and transformed into an educational center that serves the youth in the low-income neighborhood it is located in; and a church that is being converted into a visual and performing arts venue. Attendees will understand the technical idiosyncrasies of adapting sacred spaces for new uses while retaining their unique characteristics.
Dress Code: Comfortable clothes and closed-toed shoes.
This course qualifies for HSW credit with AIA and RCEP.
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