Powers Goolsby



A historical district, Fifth Ward of Houston, TX is home to inner-city families whose lives are intertwined in a small-town way. Fifth Wards churches – some more than 100 years old – have always been a vital element of the community’s culture. Fifth Ward Church of Christ has actively served its neighborhood for the past four decades. Located northeast of Downtown Houston just off of heavily traveled Interstate 10, the Church of Christ draws congregation members from 11 “zones” encompassing 219 zip codes – all within a 5-mile radius. Attendance for Sunday service easily exceeds 1,000. Originally constructed in 1970, the outdated sanctuary began to confine the congregation’s worship experience, and was in need of renovation and rehabilitation. Together with Powers Goolsby Architects, Fifth Ward Church of Christ envisioned a solution that would breathe new life into their facility.

In order to create a more inviting environment, the existing lobby was expanded to allow for inclusion of a welcome center and more room for fellowship before and after worship. Modernization and complete refurbishment of the existing restrooms was a much needed renewal to the facility. In the sanctuary itself, aisles were reconfigured around a new stage to allow for better lines of site. Economically conscientious seats replaced the existing pews for a more contemporary worship experience. A new lighting system, along with a much lighter color palette, brightened and highlighted key elements of the sanctuary space. Accented color panels adorning the walls made for a warm atmosphere while providing future acoustical flexibility should the need for sound control arise. An updated, state-of-the-art sound and audio-visual system was installed, effectively enhancing the pastor’s sermons. Lastly, a new baptistery was added complete with changing rooms.

Expanding further upon the rehabilitated sanctuary, an additional entry was added complete with a covered drop-off drive – a welcomed element to Church of Christ’s bus ministry and parishioners dressed in their Sunday best alike. Off the new entrance, administrative spaces – including a conference room and finance office – were added. Additionally, a first aid station and cry room – complete with nursing and toilet rooms – were implemented to serve parents and children of the congregation.

The resulting facility effectively aids the Fifth Ward Church of Christ along in their mission: to make and mature disciples by hearing the word of God.  



Fifth Ward Church of Christ


Houston, TX


13,846 SQ FT (12,046 SQ FT Existing Renovation, 1,770 SQ FT New Construction)



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