Chapel interior highlights stained glass designed by a member of the congregation. Photography: Brad Feinknopf©Feinknopf Photography

St. Mary of the Springs

Columbus, Ohio

Images: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

Area: 139,000 square feet

Awards: International Masonry Institute Golden Trowel Award, Chicago AIA Interior Architecture Award (Chapel), National AIA Institute Honor Award (Chapel), and Faith & Form Magazine/IFRA Liturgical/Interior Design Award.

Publications:  Wood Design and Building, Autumn 2005; Houses of God: Religious Architecture for a New Millennium, Images Publishing, Australia, 2006

Site & Program: This home for a 380-member congregation of Dominican Sisters is located on a heavily wooded 30-acre rolling site. The new facility replaces a dormitory style residence hall and will allow the sisters to age in place. The program includes 90 resident rooms, central dining, a chapel, congregation offices and ministry outreach facilities.


Design: This project was undertaken to improve the daily lives of an aging congregation.  Nagle Hartray began by considering the individual resident room. The consensus room type became the building block for planning. Rooms are clustered around community living and dining rooms modeled on single-family home design. Room clusters are organized around a landscaped courtyard that minimizes interior travel distances, provides a secure outdoor living environment, and preserves existing mature trees.

The architecture reflects the values of this religious community. Masonry and stone detailing echo the pattern of flowing water. The chapel is distinguished by its organic form. The design of this new home fosters the sense of community important to the sister’s daily life.

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