Seven Dolors Catholic Church – Preservation Awards

The Manhattan Kansas Parish partnered with RDG Planning & Design on the rebirth of their historic Italianate church involving a three-fold approach to refresh finishes, introduce new mechanical and sound systems, and bring back elements of liturgical and historic significance. 

Painting schemes, artwork, and ecclesiastical features like a restored reredos altar piece were carefully crafted with volunteers and professionals, providing harmony in the architectural theme. Building on an uncommon parish name, the Seven Sorrows of Mary are displayed throughout the church. New features for accessibility, thermal comfort, sound reinforcements, and other modern building systems were incorporated to meet the needs of the congregation. 

“Restoration has value to the entire community and plays an important role in a refreshed church.”

– Alysia Radicia, NCIDQ

The renovation design process involved careful dialogue with the City of Manhattan’s historic preservation board and the Catholic Diocese of Salina to ensure an iconic structure would continue to serve the needs of today’s parish. This renovation was a substantial one – about $2 million – and touched nearly every surface in the building. Together, RDG, Orazem & Scalora Engineering, Diversified Design, and Evergreen Architectural Arts were able to restore the church to a state of unusual beauty while remaining true to the original stylistic vision. 

“We are honored to be recognized for our contributions that will hopefully set up Seven Dolors for success in its vision for the next 100+ years!”

-Randall L. Milbrath, RDG Senior Partner & Architect

Bishop Jerry Vincke rededicated Seven Dolors Catholic Church in November of 2018 – a culmination of five years of hard work and big dreams. The church’s renovation was completed just in time for their 100-year anniversary celebration. For the people of the parish, the rededication ceremony presented delight and wonder. In attendance were several parishioners who have called this church home for generations. In fact, one member was actually older than the church itself and offered a delightful story about what the church means to them.

The design and construction team for Seven Dolors Catholic Church were presented with an award for Historic Preservation from the Manhattan / Riley County Preservation Alliance at the Historic Preservation Awards in the Union Pacific Depot Building in Manhattan, Kansas. Our team, along with BHS Construction and Father Kerry Ninemire of the Catholic Diocese of Salina were one of many attendees for the open house. Kansas Preservation Alliance, Inc. (KPA) recognized this project with a 2019 KPA Merit Award for Excellence. The KPA is dedicated to the preservation of Kansas’ heritage through education, advocacy, and alliances with like-minded individuals and groups.

“The design team was able to refresh important elements that needed to be changed while carefully considering innovative technology that was not in the building previously.”

– Brent Wollenburg, AIA, LEED AP

Click here to learn more details about Seven Dolors Catholic Church.

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