August 3, 2023: Capital Campaign Update

This week we took another step toward making our congregation’s buildings more beautiful, accessible, and useful for creative, courageous, and compassionate ministry. 

On Tuesday, Pastor Mike Wilker met with Chris Baier from Joseph Construction and Lee Anderson from Kueny Architects to open the bids on the sanctuary reconstruction project. The approximate cost of the project is $827,000. 

This total includes demolition, concrete, steel fabrication, steel installation, carpentry, drywall around the posts, flooring repair where the old posts were, painting, plumbing (radiators along west wall), and some electrical work near where the posts will be installed. It does not include reshingling the roof holes where the steel rafters will be inserted. 

Roughly, that leaves $3.6 million for the Gathering Hall and possible geothermal and solar expansion from the $4.4 million construction budget. In addition indirect/soft costs are about $1 million and include architect and engineer fees, contingency (about 10%) sanctuary furnishings, livestream, AV, etc. 

Next Steps:

  1. The construction manager will work to get a bid for shingling. 
  2. The construction manager and architect will review the bids in more detail. The construction manager will put together a full bid report for the Pre Construction Team. 
  3. Pastor Mike will call a Pre Construction Team meeting within the next week so the construction manager and architect can review the bids with the Team and they can make a recommendation to the Council.
  4. Council will receive and act on the Pre Construction Team recommendation. The next regular Council meeting is Tuesday, August 8. We doubt that the Pre Construction Team will be able to meet in time for them to have a recommendation by Tuesday’s meeting (maybe?). So, this may need to be a special Council meeting.
  5. If the Council approves the contracts, then the steel fabricator needs six weeks to create shop drawings.
  6. Then the construction manager and architects review and approve the shop drawings. 
  7. Once the shop drawings are approved, it will take 4-6 weeks to fabricate the rafters and posts.
  8. Then construction can begin. Although this technically could begin mid-December, Pastor Mike, the architect and construction manager think it’s better to begin sanctuary construction after January 1.
  9. So for the first part of 2024 we will worship either in the Fellowship Hall or Fireside Room, depending on the stage of construction.

Other steps and some questions:

  1. Kueny Architects is currently working on revised drawings of the large Gathering Hall. That project will be ready to be released for bids around August 18-21. The bids will be due around September 19-21. Then we’ll go through a similar process to above. The big decision will be whether the large Gathering Hall can be built for $3.6 million. The Pre Construction Team and the Council will probably be able to decide on the Gathering Hall construction by mid-October. To see the revised scheme for the Gathering Hall, you can view a recording of last week’s Pre Construction Team meeting by clicking on this Zoom link. Passcode: #zA2FAm+
  2. Pastor Mike recommends that the Council and Preconstruction Team host congregation information sessions in August about the Sanctuary and in October about the Gathering Hall.
  3. In later August or early September, Pastor Mike would like to convene a meeting of the Fundraising and Finance Team to prepare for and to begin implementing the Roof Raising and Ground Breaking phase of the Campaign in the Fall and Winter.
  4. We will formally apply for the Mission Investment Fund loan at least six weeks before construction begins. We have a pre-approval now. Once we have a construction budget and form a building contract(s) then we can lock in a loan rate. Although we are pre-approved for up to $1.7 million, we only withdraw what we need as we need it. We only need to pay interest during the construction; once construction is complete we pay principal and interest.
  5. Pastor Mike will contact contractors regarding the sanctuary furnishings, AV, and livestream systems. The architect and construction manager will coordinate with those contractors. That work will be done after most of the construction work is completed.
  6. The construction manager said that one of the first construction steps of the Gathering Hall project will be excavating for the elevator. That will probably need to wait until April 2024 (Easter is March 31, 2024). So most of the Gathering Hall construction will be Spring-Fall 2024, it appears.

Thank you! We are getting closer to having a building that reduces barriers so more people can welcome and gather together to praise God, care for one another, grow in faith, and serve the world God so dearly loves.

Peace be with you,

Pastor Mike

June 29, 2023: Capital Campaign Update

Capital Campaign Update
June 29, 2023
Pastor Mike Wilker 

The For Generations to Come Capital Campaign The Preconstruction Team, architects, and construction manager have been working in the past four months to craft an updated construction plan. We are working hard to balance the construction expenses and income. This week the team decided to separate the plan into four bid projects: 1) Sanctuary steel structure, 2) Sanctuary finishes, 3) Gathering Space, and 4) Elevator and small entry. This will help the team and Council determine which parts of the project we will be able to accomplish and how much each component will cost. The new bids will be due later this summer.

Projected Income
We have already received $3 million in gifts and pledges! If we have the financial capacity to build the large Gathering Hall, there may be an additional possibility of $600,000 for geothermal and expanded solar. Thank you! As we enter the groundbreaking phase, we will ask for another $700,000 in gifts. In addition, we’ll use the undesignated bequests of $112,000 for sanctuary furnishings, AV, and livestream equipment. Plus, we plan to have a $1 million loan to finance up to 30 years. This makes the total estimated campaign income $5.4 million.

On the expense side, the indirect costs like fees for architects, engineers, sanctuary furnishings, permit fees, and contingency funds will be about $1 million. That leaves $4.4 million for actual construction and remodeling costs.

Bids and Revisions
The base bid for the Sanctuary restructuring, addition of the Gathering Hall, remodeling of the first floor of the office/education wing, and geothermal wells was $6.5 million. We selected Joseph Company from Austin, MN, to help us reduce the costs of the base bid to get us to $4.4 construction.

At the end of May, the architects and construction manager presented their proposal to cut the construction costs from $6.5 million to $4.4 million. Among many smaller reductions that seemed achievable, the biggest cut they recommended was to postpone the remodeling of the office and education wing until a later phase. Even with that cut, the project would cost $5.9 million, $1.5 million more than our estimated gifts and loan.

The Preconstruction Team gave the architects and construction manager more time to rework their drawings and recommendations. 

On Tuesday, June 27, the Preconstruction Team met with the architect and construction manager to receive updated concepts and timelines for bidding and construction. We accepted the following:

Bid Package #01 – Sanctuary Steel Bid July 2023

  • Install new Sanctuary structural steel truss frames.
  • Install new Sanctuary steel columns–Chase down through lower level.
  • Patchwork associated with new steel Sanctuary level.
  • Patch work associated with new column install main and lower level.
  • Replace steel cat walk in attic space of Sanctuary.
  • Rework affected baseboard heat for Sanctuary.


Bid Package #02 – Sanctuary Finishes Bid dates TBD (Fall/Winter 2023)

  • New paint work in Sanctuary.
  • Painting of existing chair rail.
  • New sanctuary lighting package–revised design 2023.
  • Platform alterations and North Sanctuary ramp.
  • Sanctuary flooring and wall base.


Bid Package #03 – Gathering Space Bid dates TBD (Fall/Winter 2023)     

  • Gathering Space and West Entrance construction.
  • New Gathering Space Restrooms. Minimum (4) restrooms.
  • New elevator construction.
  • Installation of Sanctuary door from elevator landing.
  • Lower level elevator landing to Fellowship Hall.
  • Reduce Gathering Space kitchenette to a beverage counter.
  • Existing first floor offices and Fireside Room remain unchanged.


Bid Package #04 – Elevator and Small Entry Design Bid dates TBD (Fall/Winter 2023)

  • Sanctuary Entrance Construction (Design Option“02”–Entrance on existing grade).
  • New Sanctuary Entrance Exterior Sitework.
  • Elevator Construction.
  • West Office Entry and Vestibule Construction –wayfinding signage in hallway.
  • West ADA sidewalk from parking lot.
  • Installation of Sanctuary door from elevator landing.
  • Lower level elevator landing to Fellowship Hall.
  • Existing first floor offices and Fireside Room remain unchanged.

Sanctuary A/V, livestream, and furnishings will be bid separately and are paid from the indirect costs budget.

Council Hires Joseph Company as Construction Manager

At its meeting Tuesday night, the Council voted to hire Joseph Company from Austin, MN, as the Construction Manager for the For Generations to Come Capital Campaign project. This is the next step forward toward construction. As was previously reported, we received bids from two general contractors that were higher than our approximately $5 million budget. Joseph Company will work with 4-6 members of the Building, Sanctuary, and Fundraising teams to hone the project down to a manageable size. We expect this pre-construction work to be done and ready for congregational review and approval in mid-May. After that we’ll begin construction on a beautiful, accessible, well-designed, and affordable project.

Construction Bids Are Coming

The For Generations to Come construction bids are due December 15. The architects will review the bids and meet with campaign leaders on Sunday, December 18, 2:00 p.m. to give us their analysis. The congregation has until February 15 to make a contract. We have another round of important decisions to make. We expect the bids to be quite a bit higher than we planned a year or more ago. Plus we have various building options we need to consider (a full basement, for example). Building, sanctuary, finance and fundraising teams will meet to develop a proposal for the Council’s January 17 meeting. Once approved, the Council will host a Capital Campaign Forum on Sunday, January 29. The congregation will be able to approve the proposal at the Annual Meeting, Sunday, February 5.

Update: For Generations to Come Building Campaign

On November 9, eight Iowa-based contractors were invited to submit bids for the building addition and renovation. The bids are due December 15. Then FLC has 60 days to negotiate and select a contractor. The Council will meet January 17 to make a recommendation for approval at the Annual Meeting on Sunday, February 5. In between the Council meeting and Annual Meeting there will be one in-person forum on Sunday, January 22 or 29, and one Zoom-only forum sometime January 22-31. The architects estimate construction will start in April, that we’ll need to vacate the office and education wing by June 5, and be able to use the sanctuary until Labor Day weekend.

September 18 Congregational Meeting Results

Thanks to everyone who attended the Sunday, September 18 congregational meeting. The Congregation approved the Sanctuary Design principles reported by the Sanctuary Design Team. Thanks especially to the team members: William Bunge, Brenda Carlson, Kate Elliott, Jennifer Larson, Mark Muggli (chair), Carrie Nimrod, and Mark Potvin. Thanks also to our staff members Spencer Martin, Adrian Walter, and Pastor Mike Wilker. Next steps: In the next week or two, Kueny Architects will complete construction drawings for the entire addition and remodeling project. The Building Team will select contractors to invite to submit bids. We hope contractors will submit bids in October and that we might be able to celebrate a ground breaking in November or December. Thanks be to God!