Holy Week Construction Progress Update

Much has been accomplished in recent weeks as our overall site continues to take shape, and our building begins to rise up above ground level.  This update is best presented via the photos and explanations below, but first a HUGE request for some specific prayer related to a highly valued member of our construction team.

Our project superintendent for Gleim Excavating, who has been on the job since work began last September, is currently in Harrisburg Hospital recovering from unanticipated double bypass surgery with some added complications.  Please pray for God’s healing hand to be upon him and his family for a total recovery and peace along the way.

20190419_074846_resizedThe East Baltimore sidewalk has been completed along with topsoil placement and seeding/mulching along the residential properties on both sides of the street.


Topsoil being placed in the recreation fields.  Seeding/mulching to follow as soon as weather permits.


Individual building interior column footings are  being excavated and poured.  Anchor bolts placed in the center of each footing will receive steel columns used to provide mid-span support for the roofing steel bar joists and decking between interior and exterior masonry block bearing walls.


The interior of the LLLC wing with exterior masonry block walls revealing the beginnings of openings for doors and windows.  The PVC pipes indicate sewer connections for the restrooms in this wing.


The children’s / gym / youth / adult wing of the building with the recreational fields in the distance.  The small bobcat sits in the children’s room.  The gym is next between the low masonry block interior walls, with the youth room beyond.  The adult / community classrooms and chapel are to the right adjacent to the construction trailers.


The red trash can sits at the gym entrance off of the gathering area.  The wall footing excavation to the right will be the wall separating the kitchen from the gym.


Motorized movable scaffolding has been erected by the mason who has begun the second 5-foot-high increment of the exterior block walls.  This photo was taken from the interior of the LLLC wing looking towards the nursery rooms to the left and admin / office area to the right.  Door and window openings are increasingly visible.  The scaffolding is sitting within the playground.



An Excellent Week of Construction Progress

Much work was accomplished this week as we enjoyed mostly beautiful early spring weather.  Foundation installation continued, our masonry subcontractor arrived onsite and began laying block, and East Baltimore Street received stone base and curbing.

Perimeter foundation work included finishing the perimeter of the Little Lights / Administrative Offices wing, and completing the perimeter of the Children’s / Gym / Youth / Adult wing.  Over 800 feet of wall footings have now been excavated and installed with rebar and concrete in the past two weeks!



Our very own Mike Landis and Marlin Peffer, both quite skilled and experienced in commercial construction themselves, donated their talents to the project by tying rebar mats for the individual column footings this week.  We are so grateful for their service, and as you will note in the photos below, they got a lot of work done!!



Our masonry subcontractor mobilized to the site and began laying block a day earlier than anticipated.  Most of the perimeter of the LLLC wing has the beginnings of block walls now constructed.  The “bumpout” in the block wall below will be the main entrance to LLLC, with parking between the building and the trees to the left in the photos below.




Following yesterday’s heavy rain all day, the curbing was installed today for East Baltimore Street and its culdesac which is now clearly delineated by the perimeter curb.  The opening in the culdesac represents our driveway.  Sidewalk is next which will be installed in the weeks ahead on the south side of the street.




Using a relatively new construction technique called “formless curbing”, the entire curb system was installed in less than 3 hours this morning!


This week we finally began work on the building itself!  Excavation of the foundation system began this past Wednesday and we completed the perimeter wall footing excavations for the Little Lights wing along with the Administrative and Nursery areas preparing approximately 500 lineal feet (LF) of trenchwork this week.  Following placement of reinforcement steel, the first concrete for our building was poured yesterday to create approximately 400 LF of foundation footings.

Foundation work will continue next week along with the mid-week arrival of our masonry subcontractor to begin laying the perimeter block walls on top of these foundations.  It will be exciting to see our new building begin to rise out of the ground!  Our plumbing subcontractor will be next to arrive onsite to begin trenching and installing all drain lines that will run beneath the floor slab.

Meanwhile utility and storm water piping installations continued this week along with the installation of a quite large fiberglass manhole that will house our sewage grinder pumps. While that manhole will ultimately be buried underground along with its interior pumps and plumbing, it nonetheless has a quite significant price tag of around $27,000.

Various photos of the construction activities this week are below to give you an idea of what things are looking like as the building work kicked off.  Praise God for a week of spectacular spring weather in which to work!20190314_074212_resized20190314_074220_resized20190314_081211_resized20190314_120806_resized_120190314_122045_resized_120190314_122410_resized_120190314_130225_resized_120190315_085834_resized20190315_103532_resized20190315_092110_resized

Underground Utility Installation Almost Complete; Foundations to Start Soon!

As we’re all aware, the past 4 to 6 weeks have brought us a blast of real winter weather with rain, sleet, snow and some extremely cold temperatures.  In most cases, such weather would shut down the earthwork portion of a construction project due to the wet conditions, wind chills and frozen ground.  However, our intrepid site work contractor, John Gleim Excavating, has been able to spend this time period focusing instead on the installation of underground utilities and storm drains.  As the photos below indicate, work has continued most every day trenching and installing pipe, conduits and catch basins such that a great deal of necessary work has actually been completed during this period.

Water and sewer installations have been completed from the intersection of South Spring Garden and East Baltimore Streets to our building location on the site, a distance of approximately 1,100 feet.  UGI has likewise been onsite and installed their natural gas service in a similar fashion.  Beginning this past week our electrical subcontractor is installing the necessary conduits encased in concrete to facilitate PPL’s electrical service and Comcast’s communication services (telephone and internet), both of which are being run underground off of the utility pole closest to the East Baltimore Street culdesac.  A variety of photos below depict this ongoing utility work, including the traffic control that was required along South Spring Garden Street as the water and gas lines were tied into the service mains in that street:


We’ve been recently notified by South Middleton Township that they are requiring a 3rd fire hydrant to be placed on our property, one of which is at the culdesac, and the other two are located in parking lot islands near each end of the building.  This resulted in an unanticipated additional expense of close to $20,000.

The storm water catch basins within the parking lot and around the building pad have been installed along with the underground piping that carries the water to the storm water basins – the photo below depicts the parking area near the youth / adult / gym wing with the catch basin concrete elements with grates in the foreground and in the distance on the right side of the photo.


As seen below, the amount of construction equipment onsite has dramatically increased as a result of the work described above.


Arthur Funk & Sons has relocated their job trailers close to what will be the front of the building and begun preparing the reinforcing steel needed for the foundations.


The survey work, string lines and batter boards necessary to stakeout the building perimeter and interior bearing walls and columns are planned for this coming week with foundation work for the building commencing the week of March 18, and the masonry walls beginning soon thereafter.  Now that the utilities have been installed beneath East Baltimore Street, curbing and sidewalk installation along East Baltimore Street are planned for later in March, likely continuing into April.  Initial paving of East Baltimore Street and the CUMC driveway is anticipated in June.




At long last we have a BUILDING PERMIT!  This past week South Middleton Township issued both our building permit and our zoning permit so that construction of our building may proceed on schedule.  Praise God!!

SMT Building Permit

SMT Zoning Permit

Utilities and storm drains continue to be installed onsite this month, and if weather permits we will begin foundation excavation and pouring footings late February immediately followed by masonry block walls and installation of under floor slab utilities and drains.

Congregational Info Session #10

Last Sunday, January 27, 2019, the CUMC BC gave an update presentation on the status of SGC construction, permitting, funding, furniture acquisitions and a variety of other topics.  A fabulous video showing the construction progress via drone footage and photographs prepared by Charles Reynolds, Zachary Willard, Chris Gregory and Amanda Gregory is noted in the attached powerpoint, but could not be uploaded onto this blog.  However the video is available to view on the CUMC Facebook page, and will be uploaded to the CUMC web page on Monday February 6.

Also covered was a presentation by Jeff Barnes entitled “Lessons Learned” from recent national wfx Worship Facilities Conference & Expo events that he attended.  Hot topics from these conferences include:


To view the powerpoint presentation please click on the link below.  Be patient as it downloads – it’s a large file and may take a few minutes depending upon the speed of your computer!

BC Powerpoint & WFX LESSONS LEARNED – 2017 & 2018.012719




This past week we’ve received an incredible abundance of blessings as we draw closer and closer to receiving our ultimate blessing – celebrating the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ!

Three major milestones have been reached this week for which we need to lift up prayers of gratitude to our faithful and loving God:


After 10 months of waiting, the 8 utility poles and wires on our property were finally removed in total this week by PPL.  The photo below from several weeks ago will remind you of the prominent appearance of these poles on our site…….

Before Poles Removed

In the photo below from this past Thursday you’ll see that they’re gone at long last (and have been donated to Carlisle Borough to use as parking stops in one of their community parks).

PPL Poles Gone


Another lengthy journey was completed yesterday with the signing of a sales agreement for the purchase of our existing facility.  While we’ve had a verbal agreement in place with the buyer for well over a year, there remained many, many details that had to be worked through as the buyer looks to repurpose the building in accordance with Borough of Carlisle ordinances and requirements, as well as in consideration of our timeline to complete our new Spring Garden campus and vacate our current facility.  Details will be forthcoming at a later date when we are permitted to announce the identity of the buyer and the buyer’s plans for repurposing, but for now we are very pleased to have reached this milestone.

CUMC CornerPhoto (00000002)



Below is the text of an email sent today to our Builders Prayer Team that provides an update regarding the issuance of our building permit.  The Builders Prayer Team led by Charles Reynolds are so faithfully supporting our project by undergirding it with prayer on a daily basis, as well as praying for specific needs when requested by the Building Committee.  Their prayer support for our project and the BC is invaluable!

Good Morning Builders Prayer Team,

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!  Your prayer efforts have once again been answered by our loving and faithful God!  To my amazement, I received a phone call this past Monday morning from Ron Yoffee of the Middle Department Inspection Agency advising that they were beginning their building permit review for CUMC that day, and would do all that they could to expedite the review in light of our circumstances previously explained.

After several more phone calls and emails thru the week, and after reportedly and undoubtedly “burning some midnight oil”, Ron completed his review and issued their review letter to us this past Thursday – Praise God!!

There are 15 comments in the review letter related to the PA Building Code and our design that we must address and provide revisions and clarifications where necessary.  Thankfully there are no major issues whatsoever; just items that need some further attention from our architect and engineers.  To that end I’ll be rallying our full design team this coming week to begin work in response.  Given the upcoming holidays I suspect it will realistically be early January until we can fully respond to Ron’s letter, but that should translate to the issuance of our building permit in mid to late January which should work to maintain our construction schedule.

So on behalf of your BC as well as all of CUMC thank you again for your prayers.  And together let us raise up prayers of gratitude to our God who continues to walk with us and lead us on this journey!

Blessings, Jeff