Talk about what a difference a decade makes. On Monday night, the Leawood City Council unanimously approved a revised preliminary plan and special use permit for Resurrection’s future building plans. It was a relatively quiet night compared to eleven years ago. Resurrection building committee member Chuck Winters laughs when comparing the two processes.
“This time it was a piece of cake,” Winters said.
Back in 2002, Resurrection presented a master plan which included not only seeking approval for the current sanctuary, but also a 7,000 seat permanent sanctuary. City Council members and neighbors were concerned about the size of the project. At the multiple City Council meetings, the rooms were packed representing both sides of the issue, though the vast majority of people were supportive of the project.
On Monday, it was a much quieter scene. Resurrection’s building plan was the last item of business. Resurrection’s architect John Justus was the first presenter. In large part due to the success of Resurrection’s campuses around Kansas City, Justus was able to explain how the current plan was smaller than the 2002 plan. The 7,000 seat sanctuary had been reduced to 3,500 seats. And instead of a master plan with 975,000 square feet of buildings, the new plan only calls for 552,000 square feet.
Pastor Adam Hamilton then followed Justus’ presentation and discussed the theology behind the design of the buildings. Adam explained how Resurrection wanted to build something that wasn’t ostentatious or prideful, but a building that had humility and would feel like sacred space. He then passed the model around to give the Council members a close-up view of the sanctuary. There were only a couple of inquiries from the council members, one specifically was if Resurrection would be using Kansas City-based material suppliers for items such as the exterior materials. Justus replied that local suppliers would be considered. After a few comments from Mayor Dunn, she called for the roll-call vote. All were in favor.
There will be another presentation to the City Council in the future where Resurrection will seek approval for the scope of construction and materials in the next phase of construction. After the meeting on Monday, Adam said it wasn’t only the reduced size of the project that made it an easier process this time around, but also that Resurrection has a larger body of evidence of what the church and its members bring to our community.
“People know who we are now,” Adam said. “I think the community values this church. Every one of the council members I talked to said that is going to be a beautiful building and we are so glad to have it in Leawood.”