The church and school, designed for a newly formed congregation, is a 35,000sf assemblage of relatively simple, pragmatic forms. Rooted in the agrarian building traditions of the Midwest, these forms are executed in native limestone and weathering steel at a cost of $6,834,000.

The building honors sacred Catholic traditions through the use of light, procession, form, and materiality. In the sanctuary native limestone walls embrace the congregation on each side while clerestory windows allow filtered natural daylight to fill the sacred space. The exposed structural frame and gaps in the stone flanking walls recall the cadence and repetition of the great historic Catholic structures. A wood-louvered gothic-arch window draws attention to the east and acknowledges the importance of that orientation in Catholic tradition.

The material language of the building acknowledges the use of stone in traditional Catholic architecture and seeks, through detail, to give it a progressive expression. Stone and steel are also traditional Midwest agrarian building materials. The use of weathering steel imparts a distinct identity that is rooted in tradition yet definitively points toward the future. Always detailed as rain screens, the weathering steel has a very long lifespan and is relatively maintenance free, which fulfills the desire for a low maintenance, durable, and sustainable building.

Adopting the strategy that the most sustainable building is the building that is not built, the project seeks to first minimize its need for energy and then optimize the necessary systems for human comfort. Building components and spaces are organized and fenestrated to maximize solar benefit into the various spaces: sanctuary, gymnasium/fellowship hall, offices, and classrooms. Mechanical systems are decentralized and transport energy with fluid instead of air. This maximizes the efficiency of systems and minimizes plenum spaces. The building envelope is continuously insulated to minimize thermal transfer. Through these means the building is projected to utilize 45% less energy than comparable church and school buildings.