A 2017 Parking Lot Project Revisited

Featured  Image: 2017 Full Eclipse (Photo by Bryce A. Babcock)
Page Posted: 1/6/18

Free Methodist Members, Congregations and others who support Inner City Ministries.

 Last spring the RC approved a project to come alongside the Heart and Soul Community Church (H&S) in Rochester, NY once again to see if we might assist them in the renovation and expansion of their parking lots off North Clinton Ave. This is a major project that the congregation has delayed for several years since completing a building renovation and addition in 2010.

 Here is a Quick Overview of the Project

 (1) The current parking lot needs major repairs.

This is One Nice Looking Building! Thank You Lord! As seen in the foreground of this 2010 photo there are many sunken areas throughout this paved lot that collect water.

(2) The driveway (exit) on the north side is basically gravel and soil. It needs grading and paving.

(3) In addition, many of you will remember the burned out, abandoned MoJo’s restaurant building on the north side that became a drug house, etc. for several years.

Last year H&S worked with the City to have the building condemned and removed. This past summer the City sold that vacant lot to the congregation for $6,000 on the condition that they develop it within 18 months. This lot joins the acre lot in the rear already owned by H&S.

 The plan proposed to the City was that this lot would be developed for additional parking spaces.

A view looking south and then east showing the now vacant lot next the H&S Worship and Ministry Center.

(4) In addition, the space immediately behind the main worship facility would be graded and paved to provide (1) a drive-around exit; (2) additional parking; and (3) fenced recreational space for children’s and teen ministries.

The congregation has been using this space for a drive-around exit to the north side and parking since last fall.

IMG_5347Scene showing rear parking on a recent Sunday morning.

IMG_5348View of the current parking lot on the south side.

IMG_5335View of the one-acre lot behind the worship center showing plowed area currently used for parking when not a series of mud puddles.

IMG_5336Exit, drive-around back to North Clinton showing new empty lot on the north side.

As you can imagine, this is a major project for this growing City congregation. Drawings are nearing completion for City approval on this project, which may have to be done in stages. They have been told they can expect the City to require additional storm water drainage so that runoff is not simply dumped onto North Clinton or the property behind that owned by H&S. Early estimates, without being in a position to solicit bids yet, have begun at $50,000 and more.

Since late November 2017, H&S has provided two Worship services on Sunday morning to accommodate current and future growth.

Note: The Congregation has begun fund raising in the hope and prayer the some work may begin this spring or summer. The 18-month timeframe for developing the new lot will be up by December 2018.

Here are some significant ways interested individuals, businesses, and congregations can help make this project a reality beginning in 2018:

  • Make a one time gift or a monthly pledge over the next 12 months. A $1000 gift has already been pledged to encourage the congregation in getting started.
  • Inform the H&S Pastor if you know of owners of a construction company interested in doing this project and/or assisting by providing discounted cost as a tax write off. (Discounted cost not discounted quality of service).
  • Inform the H&S Pastor of any known grants for inner City projects such as this.

For more information on this congregation and this project, contact Pastor Louis D. Colon or the RC Executive Director. Tax-deductible contributions can be made out to the Rochester Connection (until 6/30/18) or directly to Heart & Soul Community Church. Indicate “Parking Lot Fund” on checks or Money Orders. Online giving is also available on the Church website.

Thank you for your prayers and consideration for this need.

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