on the boards: houston’s first baptist church-downtown campus

Houston First Baptist Church’s new Downtown facility required a dramatic and modern approach for the exterior. With the renovated building easily visible from two major freeways, the client desired a lighting design solution which would be highly visible and readily identifiable to those passing by. The exterior also needed to announce itself as a facility and worship home attractive to the students, young families and millennials which are becoming more plentiful in the changing neighborhood.

Working in conjunction with Kirksey, the G2LD team devised a lighting scheme which consists of streaks of light intersecting and wrapping the building—a nighttime reference to the modern network of lines painted on the building which are visible during the day. A series of renderings and mock-ups, completed by G2LD, helped the client and design team agree upon the exact approach and specification.

An abstract steel and mesh sculptural piece, which visually supports the illuminated cross is washed in the same orange color that is used for the signage for visual emphasis. Carefully detailed fixture placement helps highlight the geometric shapes of the piece without drawing attention to the background structure.

Very narrow beam fixtures put streaks of light across the renovated building façade, mimicking the painted matrix of lines visible during the day as well as the lines which overlay the central window wall. Orange LED grazers illuminate the steel mesh which visually anchors the cross.

Fixtures were placed and aimed to maximize visual coverage while avoiding signage and the cross structure.

Fixture placement allows the beams of light to appear to wrap all sides of the building.

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