Building Oversight Commitee

Former Things, New Things [Singing a New Song]

“See, the former things have come to pass, and new things I now declare…”
—Isaiah 42:9a

“Sing to the Lord a new song, his praise from the end of the earth!”
—Isaiah 42:10a


Building Project Photographs

• View 2016 photographs of construction HERE.
• View 2015 photographs of construction HERE.
• View photographs of the groundbreaking HERE.


Remind me how we obtained the first bid from our contractor BPCI

Back in the fall of 2014 when we had rudimentary initial drawings from the architect, we asked BPCI to make a preliminary bid on the project with the understanding that when more complete drawings were available we would ask them to formally bid on the project. The original BPCI bid was based on estimated square footage and space allocations only. The drawings did not contain details on such things as electrical, plumbing, HVAC and so on. We used BPCI’s original cost estimate of $2.1M to seek approval of the congregation and arrange for funding. Once we had the Permit Drawings available, we asked BPCI to assemble a more detailed bid based on the Permit Drawings. The resulting bid presented by BPCI came in $500,000 above their original estimate, representing a 15.6% increase over the original amount.


So why was the detailed bid so much higher than the original estimate?

The increase between the original estimate and the detailed bid was attributed to the following:

  • The electrical subcontractor estimate was $100,000 more due to more detail on the drawings which contained more fixtures and outlets than anticipated from the original drawings and additional energy code requirements.
  • There were increased labor costs. The construction market is hot and subs are not hungry for work, thus wages are up as there is more work available than workers
  • The roof’s custom ridge vent design involved drilling over 1,000 holes and required custom framing and screening.
  • A number of structural elements including the work to modify the balcony was three times as expensive as the rest of the construction. Example: The steel construction for covered walkways was expensive because it has to be welded in the field. Steel was specified to avoid having to install fire sprinklers.
  • Material costs increase. This was confirmed by Barney Wagner who verified that material costs are increasing as much as 5 to 10% per month.


How did we manage the cost overruns?

Here are the actions we took to manage the cost overruns and bring us closer to the original funding amount of $2.41M and maintain the original square footage designated in the plans. We:

  • Asked the architect to reconfigure some of the design elements to reflect more “Value Engineering.” Using trusses instead of a ridge beam in the Fellowship Hall reflects such Value Engineering.
  • Reduced the use of specific materials or found equally durable less expensive materials
  • Removed or reconfigured some design elements.
  • Subcontracted demolition to a less expensive contractor.
  • Subcontracted earthwork to a less expensive contractor.


What were the savings obtained from these cost management efforts?

We were able to:

  • Reduce overruns by $400,000 such that the remaining increase now represents only a 3% increase over the original estimate.
  • Contract with BPCI for $2.2M for a total project cost of $3.3M (amount includes the payoff of the education building.)
  • Implement a NOT TO EXCEED contract with BPCI which means that any further savings realized on the contract during the construction will return to the church.


What has changed in the original plans in order to reduce the cost overruns?

Building details that we have changed are:

  • Removed the covered walkways from the plans. We have, however, kept the foundations in the concrete walkway such that we can add the canopy in the future.
  • Redesigned the Gathering Space exterior canopy to be more cost effective.
  • Reduced the size of the storage loft above the administrative offices without a significant reduction in overall square footage (it still has 1700 square feet of storage, more than adequate for storage needs.)
  • Modified the Fellowship Hall structure to use trusses, placed the HVAC on the roof (and reused two of our current air handling units), and used conventional roof venting.
  • Modified our selection of flooring materials to be less expensive, yet still durable and easy to maintain.
  • Modified the design of the windows to use aluminum frame versus “storefront” windows. This will result in very little difference in appearance and yielded significant cost savings.


What is the schedule for construction?

We will begin construction mid-November and will complete construction in June or July. In mid-January we will be presenting interior design options to the congregation for assessment of preferences by the congregation.


What are the items Mountain View is responsible for furnishing once the building is built?

  • Acoustical treatments
  • Furniture
  • Font, stained glass, and art
  • Audio/Visual wiring and equipment
  • Landscape irrigation, plants and labor to plant.
  • Window coverings


What about in-kind gifts and volunteering?

We areanticipating a minimum of $100,000 savings from in-kind gifts. We are currently planning for and organizing our volunteer labor efforts for the project. More information on volunteer opportunities to follow in the New Year.



BOC members are available to answer your questions—Michael Brauhn, Carol Powers, Anna Hagan, Barney Wagner, Laura Livingston, and Phil Edlund.


Safety and Communication Notes

  • Large trucks and equipment will be entering and leaving the construction site through the parking lot at the south end of the old administration building. Please take care when driving in/out of the south side parking lot.
  • No one will be admitted to the construction site without permission from Michael Brauhn or Carol Powers.. If you do enter the construction site, you will be required to wear a hard hat and possibly other safety gear. We are working with BPCI to set aside times during construction to provide tours of the site for congregational members.
  • Please watch your children and do not let them enter the fenced off area. A construction site can be dangerous and we don’t want any children injured by playing in the construction areas.
  • Please refrain from frivolous conversations with the construction workers while they are on site. Remember, they are being paid by the hour to perform their work.
  • The BPCI construction superintendent will be in close contact with Michael Brauhn, BOC Chair. If you have questions or concerns about something you see on the construction site please address them to Michael Brauhn or another member of the BOC.


Frequently Asked Questions

Q What is the purpose of the expanded Narthex (Gathering Space)?
A To fulfill Mountain View Lutheran Church’s vision and mission. To extend hospitality. To invite the neighbor and welcome the stranger.

Q The Narthex will comprise how many square feet?
A 1,700 square feet.

Q Will changes to the balcony affect the organ?
A No. The organ’s integrity will be maintained.

Q Will changes to the balcony affect seating in the balcony?
A Yes. Seating in the balcony will be limited to those performing music ministry as part of worship services—organist, bell choir, orchestra, vocal choirs, etc.

Q Will the “welcoming Christ” figure be relocated?
A Yes. It will be on an interior wall in the newly remodeled Narthex.

Q Will the cross in front of the exterior Sanctuary/Narthex doors be relocated?
A Yes. Although where is unknown at this point.

Q There is going to be a new font near the entrance of the Sanctuary. Does the old font remain?
A Yes. We will have two fonts in the Sanctuary.

Q Will we be building a columbarium?
A A columbarium is beyond the current scope of this building project.


Building Oversight Committee Members

Michael Brauhn, Anna Hagen, Laura Livingston, Carol Powers, Barney Wagner, Julie Williams, Church Administrator Phil Edlund.



AustinCina Architects
John Manuel


General Contractor

Accrete Construction LLC – BPCI
Michael Cholerton, President