After careful preparation and anticipation, Burke Lutheran Church’s more than 121 year old, 185 ton original sanctuary has been lifted and moved to a new foundation near a newly constructed facility behind its cemetery.
The relocation, which started on Friday, June 19, completed by NCI-Roberts Construction and Heritage Movers, was covered by WISC-TV, WKOW, and Fox News. The church building project was also featured by the Wisconsin State Journal in April.
“The congregation at Burke is incredibly excited with this move,” said Linda Huz of Burke Lutheran Church. “We have found the ideal mix of honoring our past yet facing the future. We will now be handicapped accessible, allowing us to be more welcoming and inviting.”
The Evangelical Lutheran Church of America congregation has history going back to 1851, with its existing structure near the Dane County International Airport built in 1899. It has Norwegian roots and a membership going back multiple generations.
NCI-Roberts began the three phase project late last summer. Phase one was the construction of a 5,380 square foot one-story building with a floor plan incorporating a vestibule, nursery, warming kitchen with pantry, fellowship space, choir room, fireside room, offices, bathrooms; and rooms for files, mechanicals and storage. Above-window details tie into the original structure’s design.
“We are proud to help the church recognize its incredible history and continue its growth with this project,” said Jeff Grundahl, owner of NCI-Roberts Construction and parent company JG Development.
A portion of the existing church constructed in 1964 containing office and education space was demolished, and the bricks from it are being used for repairs. The contractor also removed and prepared stained glass windows from the original structure for re-installation, among other efforts to restore and maintain the memories it holds for the congregation. The addition connecting the two structures includes a sacristy and organ room.