Churches

June 26, 2015, 10am PDT
The Supreme Court, in two separate opinions, unanimously ruled on June 18 against an Arizona town's sign regulation that denied the placement of a street sign based on its content. At question was a sign directing passers-by to a church service.
The Washington Post
November 18, 2014, 1pm PST
In Washington, D.C., residents, shops and restaurants come and go, often moving from neighborhood to neighborhood. But churches remain. They anchor the community as it changes, and often find themselves changing with it.
Elevation DC
Feature
October 2, 2014, 10am PDT
By focusing on their common interest in working toward the public good, the gap between faith-based institutions and the planning processes of their communities can be bridged.
Milton Friesen
April 17, 2014, 10am PDT
Despite a grassroots campaign to retain Sunday parking meter charges it only approved two years ago, the San Francisco MTA agreed with Mayor Ed Lee to drop the charges, hoping that voters would approve two transit funding measures in November.
Streetsblog San Francisco
February 20, 2014, 12pm PST
D.C. mayoral candidates are making big promises about easing parking restrictions on Sunday in response to reports that churches are fleeing the capital for locations in Maryland due to difficulties with parking.
Washington City Paper
February 26, 2013, 1pm PST
A mixed-use development being proposed for the First Baptist Church's property in downtown Silver Spring is just the latest in a series of similar projects across the D.C. suburbs that are pitting congregations against preservationists.
Greater Greater Washington
December 25, 2011, 5am PST
The tradition of celebrating Christmas in church has not changed, but the buildings have. Architects are redefining our urban landscape and not stopping short at sacred buildings.
The Architects' Journal
November 29, 2011, 10am PST
The Catholic Church and other religious groups are facing hard times, with more churches to maintain than their dwindling numbers can support. But when they are clearly landmarks, should churches be allowed to sell off their building stock?
The Atlantic Cities
November 1, 2011, 1pm PDT
How grassroots entrepreneurs and inspired religious leaders are working to erase urban blight in Detroit.
Urban Faith
November 6, 2010, 9am PDT
Jonathan Glancey argues that in the wake of the UK government's culling of Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment, and a recession which only diluted our consumerist thirst, the current aim to build cheaply has cost us design quality.
The Guardian
September 17, 2010, 6am PDT
This commentary from church architect Randy Bright argues that New Urbanists unfairly attack church sprawl, and that the cost of developing denser communities is the freedom of the people.
The Tulsa Beacon
July 29, 2010, 11am PDT
The Riverside County Planning Commission is considering opening up more areas to churches, but local wineries are fighting the move, saying that the alcohol business and church don't mix.
The Press-Enterprise
March 6, 2010, 1pm PST
Mary Our Queen Catholic Church in Norcross, Georgia needs a new building. Rather than build a modern box, they're moving a historic basilica all the way from Buffalo, New York, calling their strategy "preservation by relocation".
PlaceMakers blog
December 27, 2009, 11am PST
The churches of New York 'remain a special category of real estate', says Holland Cotter.
The New York Times
Blog post
July 28, 2009, 12pm PDT

The concept of ripeness in several realms is elusive. I have never figured out how to properly thump a melon at a grocery store, although I have made a thorough study of it. You might want to click here, or here, or here for some guidance, none of which seems to work when it’s just me in a stare down with a cold, stone faced and silent honeydew.

Just yesterday one of my younger children from what we call the “second litter” asked me at dinner how I could tell if a coconut was ripe. I paused, realized that I had no answer, and did what every good parent should do and asked instead why they weren’t eating their salad. Yes, attack and divert.

You think melons and coconuts are tough — try ripeness in land use litigation.

Dwight Merriam
July 26, 2009, 9am PDT
A church in Phoenix has been ordered to stop giving out free food to the homeless, which the city says is out of compliance with the church's zoning.
KPHO
Blog post
July 21, 2009, 2pm PDT

The unstoppable force paradox is an exercise in logic that seems to come up in the law all too often. There is a Chinese variant. The Chinese word for “paradox” is literally translated as “spear-shield” coming from a story in a Third Century B.C. philosophy book, Han Fiez, about a man selling a sword he claimed could pierce any shield. He also was trying to sell a shield, which he said could resist any sword. He was asked the obvious question and could give no answer.

The Washington Supreme Court broke the paradox between a 12-month moratorium during which the City of Woodinville considered sustainable development regulations for its R-1 residential area, and the efforts by the Northshore United Church of Christ (Northshore Church) to host a movable encampment for homeless people on its R-1 property. City of Woodinville v. Northshore United Church of Christ (July 16, 2009).

Dwight Merriam
March 17, 2009, 12pm PDT
Another victim of the economic downturn is historic preservation. In New York, a number of churches slated for preservation can't find the funds to keep the bulldozers away.
Bloomberg.com
January 14, 2009, 12pm PST
A Washington, D.C. church contends that its current facility, a historic Brutalist buildling, interferes with its theology and should be able to replace it with something more "welcoming" and fitting with "the scale of the community."
The Christian Science Monitor
December 19, 2008, 5am PST
The high costs of preservation and the current economic downturn have pushed the Chicago archdiocese to request a demolition permit for a historic church. But preservationists are pushing back.
Chicago Tribune