A floating church proposed for the canals of London is banking on easy mobility and eye-catching design to win over new converts. Local studio Denizen Works recently won The Diocese of London’s commission to design a floating church and community center, which will wind along the city canals to serve a variety of neighborhoods. Developed in collaboration with boat-builders Turks, the nomadic church features a pop-out roof canopy that lights up at night like a glowing beacon.
Created with “a focus on developing links with the growing communities in the London Mayor’s key Opportunity Areas,” the 60-square-meter floating church will dock at key sites and draw attention with its unusual shape. When not in motion, the boat’s roof canopy will pop out to reveal transparent bellows, made from sail materials, which draw natural light indoors during the day and give the boat a glowing effect at night. The pleated architecture draws inspiration from church organ bellows and pop-up sleeping pods found in vintage VW camper vans.
“As a church, the hub will look to grow congregations in these new communities with a view to finding a permanent home in these areas when critical mass is reached,” wrote the designers. “In addition to its function as a church, the boat is designed with a highly flexible and adaptable interior to accommodate a wide range of community activities including; parent and toddler groups, meeting spaces, supper clubs, exhibitions, live music, yoga classes, book groups and art classes.” The project is slated for completion in December 2018.
Images via Denizen Works