Transparency is be a useful design attribute, as a church renovation at 194 Park Lawn Road illustrates

As mentioned in an earlier blog post, a church on property south of the Humber Bay Public Library intrigues me because a recent addition includes a focus on the attribute of transparency. Additional information about the design features of the church can be found here.

An entry at the Raw design architecture studio website provides details about the recent addition, from which I’ve extracted the following information:

The growing and active congregation of Christ Church St. James was running out of space for their programs such as a foodbank and a successful lending library. They approached RAW design to design a modest addition to this heritage structure. The addition added a narthex [lobby inside the main entrance to a church building] and provided a more generous approach to the church as well as a small exterior terrace for informal gatherings.

Such a focus is evident as well in the proposed redevelopment of Wesley Mimico United Church as described at a Jan. 28, 2013 community forum.

David Spangler (2012), a freelance mystic, writer, and speaker whose career I’ve been following with interest since the early 1970s, offers a perceptive description (p. 93, in the book cited in the link at the start of this sentence) of transparency as a process. In that process, as Spangler describes it, the boundaries that serve to surround and describe two states of being expand to include the other.

In more general terms transparency refers among other things to honesty in communications as on the part of government agencies.

Christ Church St. James Anglican

There are many ways to define and experience transparency. In architecture it can be seen, by way of illustration, in a recent renovation at Christ Church St. James Anglican.

The church, which serves both the Humber Bay and Mimico areas, is located at 194 Park Lawn road just south of the Humber Bay Public Library. The general location is Park Lawn Road north of the Queensway.

I noticed the new addition some months ago about the time that I had been pondering another addition, which also has the attribute of transparency, that was added some years ago to the Assembly Hall at Kipling Avenue and Lake Shore Blvd. West.

Christ Church St. James Anglican looks to me like a relatively new church. It doesn’t look like it was built in the 1920s or 1950s. What I noticed was an addition that is just now in the process of being completed.

Below are photos of the addition and the setting:


The building is south of the Humber Bay Public Library, shown above. Jaan Pill photo

Christ Church St. James Anglican. Jaan Pill photo

Jaan Pill photo

Christ Church St. James Anglican. Jaan Pill photo

Christ Church St. James Anglican. Jaan Pill photo

Christ Church St. James Anglican. Jaan Pill photo

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