Many churches have come to recognize that they are vying for their congregation’s time and attention against all sorts of distractions. Although the offer of salvation is a strong incentive for attendance at worship services, getting members and guests to arrive early and stay late for fellowship and education is often a more difficult task. Parkway Wesleyan Church decided the best way to bolster the interaction of their congregation was to create the same kind of surroundings that a coffee shop offers – except in a spiritual setting. They entrusted Hughes Associates A&E to bring this vision to life. “The Bridge” café serves coffee, fountain beverages, and light snacks in a warm and contemporary space located between the main entrance and the sanctuary. A bookstore neatly fits in the center of the space. Curved seating, stand-up tables as well as a more intimate space behind a two-sided fireplace offer a variety of settings for interaction. Decorative eco-resin panels along the main corridor can be opened or closed to provide varying degrees of privacy for the room. A waterfall across from the sanctuary doors helps to dampen sound and acts as a billboard.
Part of this project included finishing a shell space on the third floor. The multi-purpose room which was created offers spectacular views of the Roanoke Valley.