Adaptive Reuse of Churches

Colchester County’s Balmoral Kirk

Contrary to prevailing belief, church closures are NOT new to Nova Scotia. What is new is our inability to conceive of new uses for the structures. Over 100 years ago, resourceful and imaginative Nova Scotians turned former houses of worship into homes, inns and bowling alleys!

Vineberg & Fulton Ltd. can work with church stewards, property developers, and community groups to re-imagine and reuse these venerable buildings while valuing their architectural integrity and their importance to the community.

As Bluenoses we have been in this position before. Let’s be just as smart this time around, think outside the nave – think of these landmarks as cultural resources and consider how they can be retained rather than demolished.  In small communities the loss of these buildings is often a death-knell.  Don’t surrender these charming buildings easily; remember that the best use for a church is still as a place of worship.  Historically, church buildings were raised and supported by the entire community, not just the congregation.  Even Protestants and Catholics aided one another despite their differences; atheists too, supported the efforts of worshipers.  There is no good reason to stand idly by as a congregation in your community struggles to find the funds to repaint a steeple or replace an aging roof.  Save the church, save the community.

The “Old Chapel” was for many years the only house of worship in town except the neat Episcopal church that now makes such a nice meat market.

Truro Daily News, January 6, 1898

Posted by Joe Jun 18, 2011 Posted in Adaptive Reuse, Atlantic Canada, Featured Comments Off