Commission tables church request
By Tara DeRock Mahoney
Senior Staff Writer
Morgan County Planning Commission members tabled until next month a decision on whether to allow the construction of a new church building as a conditional use.
Madison Christian Church currently occupies a building and an “annex” on the site, and the proposed, larger building would be situated close to Hwy. 278 near the intersection with Brooks Road west of Madison.
Commission members were concerned with how the new building—expected to be a metal structure—would look from the road, as the entrance to the church would actually face toward the inner portion of the property. Also at issue with the planning commission was a deed restriction which requires that any buildings on the property be constructed to a certain standard of quality.
“As far as the appearance of the building…we are as concerned as anybody,” said pastor Dwight Webster, who spoke on behalf of the congregation in requesting the conditional use. “We’re a small church, and our funds are limited.”
Webster indicated that the parish was in the process of possibly having the deed restrictions modified by the former owners of the property. In any case, planning commission members opted to table the request until next month, when church members could provide photographs or drawings of the elevation of the building that will be facing Highway 278, and possibly have more information on what type of exterior finish the metal building will have—such as stone, brick, or siding.
Madison Christian Church is a growing church of 30-plus families.
The congregation is interested in expanding its worship space, as well as heightening its exposure to cars driving by on Highway 278.