Our much-anticipated front parking lot is open!
Image of main SBCS building parking lot after.
Image of main SBCS building parking lot before.
In August, Salem broke ground on this huge project, tearing down three houses, breaking up the old lot, and preparing the land for the new parking lot. Crews continued to work throughout the fall, but our very wet and cold winter slowed operations during January and February. Paving was delayed until the ground was dry and the weather warmed. During the week of March 14th, we excitedly watched paving trucks begin the process of paving the lot!
Images of the parking lot during throughout the process.
Over our Spring Break, crews finished paving and painted parking lines. Volunteers from Salem Baptist Church helped clean up the front of the building on Saturday, March 12th. Church members removed rocks and debris, spread lime and grass seed, and worked on the new plant beds, improving the overall curb appeal of our building. Last week, the work crews poured the concrete apron into the front lot and began installing the hand railing for the new entrance to the Upper School. The concrete has cured, allowing the parking lot to be used by the church for yesterday's service. Once the handrails are in place, the front entrance will be open as well!
Images of SBC members prepping the landscaping.
The new parking lot provides 30 extra spaces for Salem, with spaces designated for handicap and visitor parking. Our Facilities Director, James Kieser, emphasized the importance of this project by saying, “Having the new parking lot in the front of the school and church is a wonderful addition to our campus. Not only does it triple our capacity in that lot, but it also opens up the view of the buildings. Now as people drive down Broad Street, Salem stands out and can be clearly seen. All of this was done to be able to minister to more students and the community and to God be the glory.”
Finishing the parking lot is just one part of a larger improvement plan for Salem’s campus. We’ve also replaced roofs on the Upper School building and the Gym improved the HVAC systems and upgraded some outdated equipment. Additionally, the church purchased the adjacent property to allow for the continued growth of all its ministries. Expanding the front parking lot was the necessary first step in the expansion project.
God has been actively working on Salem’s behalf throughout this process. Pastor Kivett Hicks said, “All along, we’ve prayed for the “right people in the right places”. We believed that God had out
lined who would do the work, who would oversee the project as a Project Manager from the church, and who would give the right guidance as we walked through this process. Over and over again, God has answered that prayer by providing the right people to serve in the right places.” God has led people to give financially, volunteer their time, and faithfully pray for Salem. “The overall cost of this project will total just over $1 million and in the past year, nearly $800,000 has been raised for all these projects! The only way to respond to a number like that is by praising God for what He has done and we’re thankful to simply be a part of where He’s working, ” Pastor Hicks added.
We rejoice as this stage of campus improvement is completed, thanking God for his continued provision for Salem’s ministries.