How ELM is Helping Christ Episcopal Church in Ponte Vedra Beach Adapt to Growth and Better Serve the Community

Christ Episcopal Church Garden Chapel Interior

ELM is leading master planning and design efforts for the renovation and facility expansion of Christ Episcopal Church (Christ Church) in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.

Guided in concept and scope to meet the needs of Christ Church’s mission and strategic focus, the project encompasses the planning and design of nearly 42,000 square feet of renovation and new construction. ELM led the design process to most effectively incorporate Christ Church’s desired priorities of environmental awareness, design flexibility and versatility and supporting new and emerging programs. This has been achieved together with the Church’s commitment to be good neighbors by not increasing its footprint or acquiring new property.

Christ Episcopal Church Connections Interior

The project scope includes renovation of aging existing structures, and construction of new facilities to better accommodate new and existing church ministries and community needs. The ELM team centered improvements to the neighborhood church around three strategic focus areas, including addressing the needs of current members, future members, and becoming a pacesetting Episcopal Church.

The existing Christian Family Center will be renovated and repurposed as the new home of the Christ Church Preschool and Early Learning Program, which will accommodate 280 students in 15 classrooms, and include exterior improvements to more safely and efficiently facilitate student drop-off and pickup, a secure outdoor playground area and the latest in technology to address current and potential future program and administrative needs.

Christ Episcopal Church Early Learning Center

ELM designed a new 19,800 sq. ft. Formation and Arts building with classroom, meeting, training, administration, practice and performance spaces to create an inspiring, functional and versatile location for church and community member activities.

The existing administration building will be renovated to house the new Connections Center, which will provide a welcoming space for clergy, staff, visitors, parishioners and volunteers. Additionally, the existing Cooper Chapel has been newly redesigned, and will be expanded to create a more versatile location for worship and small church-related events.

Christ Episcopal Church Garden Chapel

In addition to architectural and major campus layout modifications, ELM’s multidisciplinary design team has designed an enhanced landscape plan to improve wayfinding and create connections between the various buildings. Additions include a garden courtyard throughout the length of the campus, creating a beautiful organizing element within the church campus, and an outdoor gathering area adjacent to the new chapel and the memorial garden.

ELM’s design phase is coming to conclusion next month. Groundbreaking and construction is scheduled to begin in summer 2018, with an estimated completion in January 2020.



Ponte Vedra Recorder

Christ Church Renovation, Expansion to Begin Summer 2018