Sunday, August 24, 2014

It may not look like much just yet....

It may not look like much just yet, but the ground work is now underway for the new Catholic church in Maricopa, Arizona.  

Aerial view of The Crossing from the south west.  The new church will sit just left of the newly paved parking lot.
More than just a parish church, the project will be not only the spiritual center for the city's 10,000 Catholics, but will create a whole new city center in the rapidly growing city of Maricopa.

When complete, The Crossing will serve the parish and the greater community of Maricopa with a church, school, housing, businesses, and recreational areas.

Sitting on 38 acres of land, The Crossing is a new planned area development that will create a sustainable and walkable neighborhood with church and school, residences, shopping, offices, and business opportunities.

A broad range of residential, church and civic, educational, retail and office uses will create a truly pedestrian friendly and community oriented neighborhood in the heart of Maricopa Arizona.

The centerpiece of the Crossing will be the new 500 seat Catholic church for Our Lady of Grace Parish.

Phase 1 of the new church will accommodate 500, with a new parish administration and social hall.

Eventually the site will be home to several hundred residences in single family, apartments, condominiums, and elderly housing.

Character study of apartment houses. By creating a larger scale multifamily residence, the building itself helps to define character of the street, making the buildings more noble and the street more interesting for pedestrians.
In addition, commercial retail and office, restaurants and various social and civic services are planned.

Character study of street scape, showing live-work units with street-level retail, and multi-family apartment houses

The entire site has been designed to serve the families and the community with significant public amenity spaces such as a church plaza, a town square, village greens, sports fields, and a central park.

Significant public areas for social activities are planned throughout the property.

The project incorporates the best practices of form based codes, smart growth, and new urbanism. This includes the use of "build-to zones" instead of "setbacks"; ancillary dwellings that provide single family residences to have on site rental opportunities; shared parking arrangements and on street parking that significantly reduces the required amount of parking (reducing costs, environmental impact, and heat gain, and providing for more social and community oriented land use).

By creating a "build to zone" instead of a building setback, the stores are pushed up to the street frontage, which creates a pedestrian friendly area and helps to define the sense of place.
There is also a variety of traditional building types such as row houses, bungalows for starter houses, low income, and downsized families, and live-work units.

Rowhouses define the common "village green" which becomes a place for community, recreation, and play.

Character study of bungalow houses grouped around a "village green".  These smaller houses serve lower income, starter houses, and down-scaling retirees. By socializing the public areas, more land is given over to the whole community while providing economical private residences.

The project broke ground in April 2014, and the first phase of the grading, drainage, roads and infrastructure are now being installed by Chasse Building Team.  The parish is looking to complete its fundraising and financing campaign to receive permission from the Diocese to start construction of the new church as soon as possible. 

The new church will have a strong street presence announcing itself to the whole community, and will define the church plaza as a place for the whole community to enjoy.
It may not look like much now, but take a peek at the video of the site development, videoed by Mike Barnes with his quadcopter and Go-Pro camera.  The church will be soon rising on the large open field between the roads and the paved parking lot seen in the video.

For more information, contact the parish at:

Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church
45295 West Honeycutt Avenue
Maricopa AZ 85139

t. 520.568.4605

or leave a message here in the comments.