Palm Coast United Methodist Church Takes Another Step Toward New Matanzas Woods Campus

Nearly 50 congregants of Palm Coast United Methodist Church gathered Wednesday for the groundbreaking of their new 25,500 square foot campus at the southeast corner of Matanzas Woods Parkway and Belle Terre Parkway, led by the congregation’s pastor, Rev. Dr. Kevin James Sr.

Brian Walsh, Founder of The Collage Companies, addressed the crowd: “It is truly an honor to work with you to build a building so together we can build God’s kingdom. We’re in the building business and that’s what we do, but our passion is really to help churches build the kingdom, so we are honored to be here with you today.”

Pictured with a rendering of the new Palm Coast United Methodist Church campus are, from left: the Rev. Dr. Kevin James Sr., Jim Gary and Larry Torino, plus Brian Walsh, CEO of the Collage Companies. (© FlaglerLive)

Below is an exert from an article published by FlaglerLive

The church, whose current campus is on Belle Terre Parkway just north of Palm Coast Parkway SE, bought 22 acres for a new facility at the Mantanzas Woods site in 1999. That 23-year span led Jim Gary, chair of the PCUMC’s board of trustees, to tell the crowd: “Our new church has been a long time coming and I know you’ve been waiting for this moment. It’s a marathon race from the planning stage to approval and then finally to completion.” Gary said the new campus is targeted for completion in late 2023 or early 2024.

The $7.1 million project had languished for years until church member Larry Torino, who also is city planner for Flagler Beach, proposed selling some of the 22 acres the church owned to help subsidize a new campus. The City of Palm Coast approved rezoning 10 of the acres for commercial usage, which led to Dollar General buying one parcel — its retail store, fronting on Matanzas Woods parkway, is up and operating.

PCUMC’s new facility will be “roughly 18,000 square feet, but we’re leaving roughly 8,000 square feet of shell space to determine what would be the best use for that space, to have the sustainability to grow once we’re here,” Torino said. The church’s current campus is 25,000 square feet, making it approximately the same as the new campus – but the Matanzas site will make more efficient use of its space, Torino added.

The current church at 5200 Belle Terre Parkway includes a school that can accommodate approximately 105 students, but whether the new campus will include a school is uncertain at this time, Torino added. For design of the new campus, Torino contacted BGW Architects, which he described as a “faith-based architectural group” based in Ogden, Utah, and whose acronym stands for “Building God’s Way,” Torino said.

While one of BGW’s websites touts the firm’s more than 1,000 “ministry designs,” a second site notes it has “provided design and construction management services to a wide range of commercial and non-profit clients that include financial institutions, performing arts centers, schools and colleges, corporate office buildings and faith-based organizations.”

Construction of the new PCUMC campus is being done by the Collage Companies, a Lake Mary-based general contractor that BGW works with “in this region of the country,” Torino said.

Among the participants in the groundbreaking for the new Palm Coast United Methodist Church campus were Isabella Calloway, far left; Rev. Dr. Keven James Sr., second from left; and Palm Coast Mayor David Alfin, fourth from left. (© FlaglerLive)