Nashville First Baptist Church selected ESa to develop a comprehensive master plan and design for construction to meet the needs of their growing congregation.  Located in downtown Nashville, adjacent to the Bridgestone Arena and the Music City Center convention facility, the design enhances the church’s mission to minister to the surrounding urban environment. Key program elements include added contemporary worship space, along with event and gathering areas that are light-filled and welcoming.

Worship space is equipped for video presentations and designed with amplified music in mind. Separated from teen and adult religious formation classes, new dedicated Bible study classrooms are reserved for young children. The new 500-seat Fellowship Hall can accommodate large events and congregation-wide functions like outreach events, concerts and guest speakers. Moveable partition walls in the hall allow for the creation of flexible spaces, including up to six classrooms for adult Bible study classes. This area also features a catering kitchen for church events and functions.

Additional design features include a rooftop terrace, shell space for future café expansion and the HUB—common space that connects the expansion to the existing building on all levels. The expansion/renovation maintains the existing campanile, a gothic bell tower built in 1886, and sanctuary, which was designed by Nashville architect Edwin Keeble in the 1960s. These historic elements combine with the new building to form an architectural timeline clad in brick, metal panels and glass that reflects the church’s nearly 200-year history.

ESa has done a remarkable job of listening, researching, and incorporating all the possible needs of our facility for decades to come. The ESa team members dedicated to our project have worked tirelessly as if they were our own family—taking our needs and dreams and creating a vision far beyond our expectations. —Hugh Sloan, Chairman of Master Plan Implementation Committee, First Baptist Nashville

Photos: © Gabe Ford Photography