The Salvation Army Corps was founded in Colchester in 1882 and moved to its current site of Butt Road and Wellington Street in 1973. In many respects it is the perfect location for the organisation; just five minutes from the town centre and with high volumes of passing pedestrians and cars but the building looked unfriendly and its main entrance was almost hidden.
Extensive refurbishment and alternations have been undertaken to provide a new front entrance in a preferred and more visible location in hope of attracting more ‘passers by’. The existing staircase within the building was relocated to a corner within the entrance hall whilst a striking glazed entrance foyer was added to provide a colourful and welcoming gateway into the building. Further refurbishment and alteration works increased the internal floor space by over 100m² to create additional meeting rooms and ancillary facilities enabling our client to enhance the services they can offer. The WC’s were also refurbished to ensure that they were DDA compliant and user friendly.
One aspect of the project that provided an interesting challenge was the Worship Hall of which the acoustics had never been rated highly by the client; to improve on the acoustics within the building Ecophon Master Ds/Gamma was used, a product with a lower acoustic absorbency than standard suspended ceiling systems.
Although the existing landscaping around the building was largely unaffected by the installation of the new entrance, an area of grass was removed to add five new spaces to the existing car park and provide room for a ramp for disabled access. A platform lift was also installed internally to enable wheelchair access to the first floor.