Capital Campaign
 

 

Capital Campaign
June 2017 Update

 

On June 18, more than seventy people gathered in the parish hall after church to hear an update on the progress and plans of the St Paul's 2020 campaign. St. Paul's Rector Jeff Mello and campaign co-chair Roger House presented an update, and architect Mike Lindstrom and members of the Buildings and Grounds and Finance Committees were present to field questions. What follows is a summary of this presentation. You will find the copies of the architects' current renderings of the lower level and outdoor renovations at the end of this update.
 
Our Vision
The campaign and project's vision remains the same. As we described in our case narrative last Fall: "God has blessed us with a warm and vibrant church community that is experiencing joyful, abundant growth. We see it in new faces in our pews on Sunday morning. We feel it in the caring embraces of longtime parishioners. We hear it in the laughter of children running up and down our sanctuary's aisles.
As we look ahead and prepare for the coming decades, our challenge is to strengthen St. Paul's physical infrastructure so we can better meet the needs of a growing congregation. Doing so will allow us to continue to throw open our hearts, minds, and doors to all."
 
Priorities and the Budget
For well over a year the Buildings and Grounds Committee has spent countless hours refining the priorities for the campaign and conducting detailed research and design work with the architects, the cost estimating company and two sets of structural engineers. As all of these folks have dug into the realities, the project details and costs have evolved.  While the priorities are essentially the same, we have had to re-think plans for accessibility and for the tower.
 
This table illustrates a comparison of costs from Oct 2016 to June 2017
                                              Oct 2016                    June 2017              June 2017
                                              Hard costs                  Hard costs              w/overhead
Heating system
 $250K
 $215K
 $268K
Lower Level Renovations
 $400K
 $722K
 $903K
Tower and Exterior Masonry
 $240K
 $513K
 $643K
Organ Repair
 $50K
 $50K
 $50K
Accessibility
Accommodations
 $500K
 $100K
 $138K
Total Estimated Cost                $1.44M                        $1.6M                     $2.0M
 
Due to significant increases in the estimated costs for the lower level and urgent structural issues with the tower, our total estimated costs for all of the priorities is now $2.0 million (including overhead). This is at the upper end of the original range for our Campaign.
 
Current Plans for Accessibility and Lower Level
When we realized how costly a lift and additional stairway would be, as well as the fact that the lift alone would not make all of our spaces accessible, we looked for an alternative solution. In our current plan, an accessible exterior ramp will lead from the back door of the church around the play yard and down to a door in the lower level. A terraced space will allow more light into the lower level as well as create a space that can be used for outdoor worship and fellowship. Importantly,
the lower level design will incorporate much of our original vision - with two large classroom areas on the right that look out on the terraced outdoor space and a large classroom on the left that can be divided into two rooms.  To see a more vivid picture of this exciting plan, please view the architects' drawings at the end of this update.
 
The initial estimate of $400K for the lower level renovations was an educated best guess by the Buildings and Grounds Committee. After engaging the architects and gathering additional data points, the next set of estimates were very close to the current $903K and have remained very consistent.
 
Current Diagnosis of the Tower (inside and out)
We commissioned two structural analyses by experts in the field and both led to a similar conclusion: our tower is in dire condition and its repair cannot be postponed. The structural integrity of the tower was found to be more compromised than expected and this led to a significant increase in the cost of repair and restoration. Fortunately the second analysis produced a lower estimate of the cost of repair. The exterior stone of the top portion must be essentially removed and rebuilt. There are places where light can be seen straight through, and there is danger from potential falling stones and mortar (hence the scaffolding). Some churches have been forced to remove their towers and replace them with turrets, but this would still be a costly (~$500K) project and would destroy the architectural integrity and beauty of the building. Our goal is to raise the funds to fully restore our tower. When the work is complete, the massive bell-cast by an apprentice of Paul Revere-will ring again!
 
Current Funding
Our current plan is to move forward with the full scope of work described in the campaign, while exploring new and expanding funding options for the complete restoration of the tower.
 
Total Estimated Costs                       $2,100,000 (incl. campaign and research)
Current Funding Available
           St. Paul's 2020 Campaign             $760,568
           Titcomb Estate Seed Grant           $100,000
Total Funds Still Needed                       $1,239,432
 
Where Might These Monies Come From?
  •       Additional/Increased Pledges
The best option if possible.
  •        Loans
Under serious consideration by finance committee and vestry but will create a monthly financial burden for the church. We will end up paying double what we take out.
  •        Endowment
While it is a resource, the endowment currently funds roughly 12% of our operating budget, and using endowment capital would reduce those funds.
  •         Rental Revenue
Renting the renovated lower level to a new preschool partner will allow us to generate a monthly income much closer to the market value of similar spaces in Brookline.
  •         Tower fund-raising plan focused on the greater community
Brookline does not have a fund for historic building preservation. We are considering mounting a fundraising campaign aimed at the local community--to the many people who value St. Paul's as a landmark, and a welcoming space for concerts, meetings and fellowship.

 

What Can I Do to Help?
  •         Pray
If everyone prays for this vision and effort, it will help immeasurably to lift and sustain it.
  •         Increase pledge
Of course you may have pledged all that you are able to. But if is possible to increase your pledge to the campaign, now is the time.  You can make a powerful difference. 
  •         Add a year (or two) to current pledge
This effectively raises your pledge, but perhaps makes it more manageable. 
  •         Make an early planned giving gift
Thanks to Camilla Titcomb's bequest, we were able to launch the research phase of the campaign. We hope that all of us are remembering St. Paul's in our wills. Sometimes people are able to decide to give an early planned gift in order to enjoy the outcomes. Someone on the finance committee could advise different ways to approach this.
  •         Pay pledge as soon as possible
If it is possible to pay more of your pledge up front, it will help greatly in launching the work without incurring debt. We hope to break ground in November.
  •         Spread the word
Talk about St Paul's with folks inside and outside the community. Tell our story and invite people to join this work.
  •         Get involved!
Your ideas and energies are much needed and appreciated. Do you have a fundraising idea? A lead on a low-interest loan? An ability to write grant applications? Speak to one of the staff, co-chairs of the campaign, vestry or wardens.
 
Architects' Renderings
 

Click here to see our full Case Narrative that outlines the goals and scope of the campaign!

Click Here to read the introduction letter from Jeff, our head rector!

 Click here to read an introductory letter from the Co-Chairs of the Campaign!

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