An update on the plans for our new multipurpose hall
At long last, I’m able to give you an update on the plans for our new multipurpose hall to be named in memory of Fr. Michael Kyte, OP.
Architect’s rendering of revised plan for the Fr. Kyte Multipurpose Hall
Meeting of the Building Committee on November 16, 2016
Thanks to the substantial contributions and enthusiastic support of many parishioners, we are on track with the collection of the pledged funds for the project. While we had initially hoped to have construction underway at this point, an opportunity presented itself which we could not in good conscience pass up.
Our architects designed a beautiful and functional building which met the parish’s needs and was approved by the appropriate Village boards and committees. There were however some concerns expressed by both the Village and some parishioners regarding certain details of the plan. One of the concerns was that our budget did not allow us to clad the new building entirely in stone. (In the original plan, a stone base and pilasters were to be melded to exterior walls faced with stucco that would match the color of the limestone of the church). Second, the flat roof of the proposed building was seen as inharmonious with the classic sloped slate roofs of the adjacent church and parish center buildings.
In August we hired a general contractor, Northern Builders, Inc. They looked at the plans and offered an alternative design which would enable us to have the entire Kyte Hall faced in stone without adding substantially to the overall cost. A secondary benefit is that this solution also entails adding a sloping faux slate mansard roof to the building, keeping the new construction more in harmony with the design of the other buildings of our campus. (An architect’s rendering of the new design is above).
As I said, the ability to have a fully stone clad building which we previously believed to be beyond our financial ability was too good to pass up. Every member of the Parish Building Committee felt it was a great improvement. The only down side to this is the time it has taken to have new plans drafted and to have those plans reviewed and approved by the River Forest Village officials. The Village has been extremely helpful and supportive, but despite everyone’s best efforts we have reached a point where weather conditions would now affect construction costs rather drastically. While we had all dreamed of having Kyte Hall completed by the New Year, it is now evident that the best stewardship of our resources requires us to delay construction until next spring—possibly in April 2017. This was the unanimous decision of the Building Committee. And the good news is that on November 7th the Village approved our revised plan. During the next few weeks we will be getting finalized drawings and then get all of the necessary permits.
So our construction project is still on track, but due to these circumstances is delayed by approximately six months. I am confident that this delay, while inconvenient, will ensure that Kyte Hall is the best building we can have, harmonious with the elegance of the St. Vincent Ferrer campus and a fitting tribute to the late Fr. Michael Kyte, OP.
Fr. Tom McDermott, OP