Toccoa First Baptist Church

First Baptist Toccoa is a very active community church with a growing student population. Even though this church is located in a rural area in northeast Georgia, it is known for its progressive building program. Over the years, the church has expanded to meet the needs of a growing congregation.

Two years ago, the church’s leadership team realized many of its young families were leaving the church in search of broader and more progressive form of worship. This is when they contacted CDH Partners and asked for assistance in retaining their current student population and expanding it to attract others from the surrounding communities.

Designers created a building that goes beyond meeting the needs of the church’s teens. While the focus of the new addition is primarily focused on students and teens, this new 14,500 square foot space accommodates a broad range of age groups and includes a contemporary multipurpose space that is used for worship, recreation, and church fellowships. The area is equipped with a state-of-the-art stage and elevated sound booth.

The facility was designed with community in mind and offers meeting and gathering spaces. The cafe with stained concrete floors serve as a perfect location for friends to meet and talk. An enclosed glass corridor serves as a welcoming transition from a traditional church environment to this newly design contemporary space.

WellStar Corporate Office Building

The complete renovation of the 112,000 square foot WellStar Corporate Office Building encompasses multiple phases of construction. The project scope includes the renovation of the two-story lobby area with a reception desk. Window walls allow natural light to flow into a new executive boardroom that accommodates up to 40 people. This area has state-of-the-art telecommunication equipment, which includes drop down projection screens, smart boards, wireless communications, flat screen televisions, and a small kitchen with an espresso bar.

The three-story T-shaped building contains nine departments with individual conference rooms. Each one was renovated with a warm color palate and new technology. These areas also contain small kitchens and work areas that include copy and telecommunication equipment. The lower level contains a full service gourmet kitchen and cafe. A window wall in this area overlooks a mature landscaped patio with outdoor seating.

CDH facilitated the relocation of 300 employees to this location. The management of this move included the documentation and relocation of all existing furniture and the procurement of new furniture.

Historical Friendship Baptist Church

Building committee members for the historical Friendship Baptist Church selected CDH Partners to design a completely new church campus. Plans call for this new campus to be completed in April 2017, which will be the church’s 155th anniversary. Friendship is one of the oldest African-American churches in the city of Atlanta.

The new 44,000 square foot church will contain state-of-the-art technology and a sanctuary that seats 500. The design for the Fellowship Hall will be flexible and contain a stage and room for over 450 people, while a smaller chapel will seat 200. The church will also contain educational and choir rehearsal space.

Friendship Baptist was displaced when the Atlanta Falcons began to acquire property for a new stadium. It was established in 1862 and is Atlanta’s first African American Baptist congregation. In the beginning, church services were held in a donated railroad boxcar given to Friendship by a church in Ohio. It was used for worship services on Sunday and as a classroom by youth during the week.

Both Spelman and Morris Brown Colleges began in the basement of Friendship Baptist Church. These schools later became a part of Atlanta University. The church is also the “Mother” church to nine other African American Baptist congregations.

Many elements of the historical Friendship Church building have been preserved and will be incorporated into the new building. Stained glass windows will be reused along with the church’s original bell and pipe organ.


Friendship Baptist Church
Atlanta, GA

Read more about this important historical church by clicking here.

Northeast Georgia Corporate Plaza: A Lean Design

The facility utilizes Lean construction design—an improvement technique that focuses on maximizing utilization of resources and minimizing waste. As a rapidly growing healthcare provider, Northeast Georgia Health System (NGHS) realized the need to locate many system administrative support functions under one roof.NGHS uses this approach to increase the quality of patient care and employee satisfaction. This administrative site is centrally located and remotely supported multiple hospital and healthcare campuses.

CDH architects developed a plan for the interior and exterior renovation of the 109,000 square foot adaptive re-use project. What was once a vacant Sam’s Club, has been transformed into a vibrant office facility. A near-term projection of 480 employees from 20 departments will move into this open plan space. Designers worked with administrators and employees from every department to create a flexible, adaptable space that meets the system future work flow goals.

Departmental collaboration is a primary focus of the new design, which includes collaborative support spaces, multi-functional training and meeting rooms, a fitness center, and work café. This new office space also utilizes shared conference rooms and open collaborative spaces throughout the building.

A natural color palette and inviting finishes complements the standardized flexible systems furniture. As departments grow and expand, the plan will adapt to the changing needs. The lighting will utilize 58 existing skylights, daylight harvesting, and innovative lighting fixtures to create a comfortable and environmentally conscious design.

This highly collaborative and contemporary office setting focuses on employee comfort and satisfaction. Support nourishment stations and the opportunity to work in a variety of postures and groups will motivate employees to “love” their new office.


Northeast Georgia Medical Center
Gainesville, Georgia

Square Footage

Renovation: 112,994


NGSH Corporate Plaza from CDH Partners on Vimeo.

WellStar East Cobb: an evidence based design system

The design for WellStar East Cobb offers a evidence-based design system that is a combination of out-patient services enhanced with health and wellness opportunities. One of the challenges designers faced was to be sensitive to the needs and wishes of the surrounding community. As a leading provider of healthcare services in the Metro-Atlanta area, WellStar Health System worked with CDH Partners to provide an innovative delivery to healthcare for area residents. The result was a state-of-the-art health park that services area residents in a highly populated residential area. Designers master planned the site and facility, which offers a results-based system that combines enhanced outpatient services with health and wellness opportunities.

At East Cobb, the design team of CDH Partners began by creating a master plan for the Health Park site. The vision for this park and others like it bring the healthcare services closer to the communities which they serve. Each park is an integral part of the community and is utilized for medical services and also fitness and health education.

The site for the East Cobb Health Park is surrounded by a residential neighborhood and a church. The Health Park includes space for urgent care, imaging services, medical offices, childcare, and retail. A terraced parking deck is nested into a hillside offering easy access to the three story structure. The CDH design team preserved much of the wooded landscape leaving it natural and undisturbed. Walking trails along a stream are open to the public. A scenic drive connects to the Wellness Center and Rehab facility. Additional accessible parking is included in future planning and will service the needs of a growing visitor population.

The scope of this health park was to design a “one stop” healthcare facility. Utilizing an integrated team approach, a team consisting of architects, interior designers, contractor, end users, evidence-base design experts, and medical planners came together to work on this state-of-the-art 190,000 square foot health park high performance building.

Designers created a warm and inviting environment that assists in patient healing and wellbeing. This facility contains an ambulatory surgery center as well as clinical outpatient services for diagnostic imaging and lab, urgent care, primary care and specialty outpatient services such as pulmonary and physical rehabilitation. It also contains employee fitness, community education, and conference room space.

Architects and designers also focused on creating an intrinsic design that guides visitors through the facility using visible points of connection. Their goal was to design a building that reduces patient stress for a better experience and outcome. Exam rooms have custom benches that provide comfort for family members and function as storage beneath. Physician offices are combined with medical assistant offices for space efficiency. Furniture and finishes were selected for durability, safety, ease of maintenance, and comfort.



WellStar Health System
Marietta, GA 30060

Square Footage:



23 acres


Fall 2014


Wellstar Health Parks from CDH Partners on Vimeo.

WellStar Pediatric Center

This is WellStar’s first facility that was built solely for pediatrics. CDH Partners were asked to renovate an existing building and then to design a facility that would contain immediate care and also state-of-the-art imaging geared solely for children and young adults.

An expected population increase of more than ten percent over the next four years motivated the client to build this outpatient pediatric diagnostic facility that also includes urgent care and orthosport spaces. The 20,000 square foot center offers pediatric ambient MRI, CT, digital radiography, ultrasound, fluoroscopy, and blood draw capabilities.

The client’s vision included a facility that was fun for children and welcoming to parents and caregivers. The goal was to design an environment that was bright and fun. Designers for CDH created a facility that is full of imagination, color, and positive distractions. It is a facility that contains not only top-of-the-line equipment but also spaces that reduce stress.

Brightly colored window walls located in the lobby areas allow natural light to flow into the core of the building. Themed spaces provide children with choices. Wall scenes in the procedure rooms can be changed to created different fun and distracting environments. Water features, murals, LED monitors, and an interactive wall are positive distractions that are used to help children to relax.

Furniture is age-designed and sized. There are also electronic tablet stations located in the lobby that can be used to access the internet and games. The medical equipment is designed with children in mind. The MRI has an ambient experience, which can be programed to display different colors and wall scenes. A Kitten scanner is used to education children about how a MRI works. Before a child has a procedure done, he or she can watch a toy animal have a MRI with an imitation CT scanner. The results are display on a monitor  that shows what the CT scan found inside the animal.

Meeting community needs was a top priority for this client that has emerged as a healthcare leader in the metro Atlanta area. A total of 15 physicians rotate through the center. Each one has a set of patients. This 24-hour center has a physician on duty at all times.


WellStar Health Systems
Marietta, Georgia

Square Footage



Wellstar Pediatric Center from CDH Partners on Vimeo.


First Baptist Church Fayetteville, Georgia

The major concern the leadership of this church was retention. They wanted to make sure they had the right updated facilities to offer the youth and young families. The finishes, themed environments, and security measures were not current. CDH had built a multipurpose building on this campus years ago and it also needed updating. The choice to have a more contemporary facility also included theater seating in the main sanctuary.

The renovation took place “under roof,” which called for contractors and their teams to work during the week making the facility available for use on Sundays. It involved a great deal of demolition work, especially to the preschool and children’s areas that included moving walls, adding welcome stations, updated finishes, millwork, paint and themed environments.

The campus also contained a historical structure, which was the original sanctuary. It is now used by the youth for worship. This building was completely renovated and the original stain glass windows were refurbished. The new contemporary designed facility was also something adults, who use the facility, are comfortable using. The middle school and high school groups also have assemble space in this facility. A café was added to this area making it a great place for people to meet ad have coffee.

The children’s area was relocated and totally reconfigured. Corridors that had been difficult to navigate were changed and enlarged to increase traffic flow. Walls were taken down and reconfigured to include a center corridor that allows for a smoother transition from one space to another. An area used for fellowship, recreation, and classroom space was located on the lower level of the main worship facility. It was under used because it was dark and hidden. This space was totally renovated adding new paint, millwork, along with a new ceiling, a stage, and a state-of-the art lighting and sound system. Now, it is a perfect place for events and recreation. An elevator was also added to this building making it handicap accessible.

The space for preschoolers required a total renovation. The rooms that were in this location were functional, but CDH designers added new finishes, paint, millwork, and updated the themes. Security was also added taking care of a critical need. Architects added a check in area, cross-corridor doors to create a physical barrier to aid in security along with access control items requiring the addition of keypads. Before the renovation, the administrative staff was scattered all over the campus making security problematic. It also meant that building that contained these offices had to be heated and cooled so the campus was not energy efficient.

Architects captured some classroom space and turn it into an office suite for the staff and the senior pastor along with space for volunteers. Before the redesign and renovation, various buildings had to be left open. This newly constructed area has helped the staff to work more efficiently while conserving energy. The campus is now easier to navigate and to manage and secure. The results of the renovation is a more contemporary setting that incorporated theater seating themed areas while meeting the needs of all age groups.


First Baptist Church
Fayetteville, GA

Square Footage


Prince Avenue Baptist – Children

For years, Prince Avenue Baptist Church has had a very active children’s program. Therefore, when church leaders met with the CDH design team, they immediately expressed a desire to create an area that motivated young children to learn.

“Genesis Junction” does exactly that. This themed space is highly motivational and entertaining. It was designed to have the look and feel of a fun train depot. The check in station is a ticket counter with security doors for limited access and video cameras to monitor entry. There are even blinking red lights on the railroad crossing signals.

A large mural of an old steam locomotive extends down the hallway and acts as a wayfinding element for children and parents. A small theater located inside the preschool area provides a place for children to watch puppet shows and interact with teachers and other children.

“Kidzopolis,” which is located on the upper level, is a large space designated for children K-5. It includes “The Clubhouse” theater, another themed area that containing large trees, marquee style posters depicting the current Sunday school lesson, and a stage area with props suitable for a teaching environment. Solid and patterned carpeting that is sensitive to the black lights provides another sensory rich experience.

Exits from the Clubhouse lead to secure corridors and provide access to the children’s ministry classrooms. The inclusion of 3D elements and black lighting create a sense of drama and excitement. Thanks to colorful wall messaging, these areas are also places where values and principles are taught in an easy-to-understand ways.


Prince Avenue Baptist Church
Bogart, Georgia

Square Footage



2010 Masonary Award of Georgia


CDH Partners design Themed Spaces that work. from CDH Partners on Vimeo.

First Centenary United Methodist Church

When leaders for the First Centenary United Methodist Church met with the CDH design team, they said their top priority was to have a greater outreach within the community, especially to inner city children and students on the nearby University of Tennessee Chattanooga campus. The design of the new ministry center has helped the church achieve its goal.

This new structure contains worship space for The Vine, the church’s contemporary outreach to students and young adults. It also contains a gymnasium that facilitates greater connection with the inner-city youth. It is clad in synthetic stucco with scored joints, to mimic the limestone exterior of the existing campus. Significant spans of glazing at the street level provides natural light for gathering areas and also creates a sense of welcome for visitors. Large overhangs add interest to the streetscape, and passive solar shading assists the mechanical systems with climate control. This new facility is located across the street from the original worship center and is connected by an enclosed pedestrian bridge.

Its also home for the church’s fellowship hall, two large breakout rooms, a full service commercial kitchen, a café, and a bookstore. Renovation to the existing church building was required for connection via the bridge to the worship center level of the church. Other improvements included: circulation between the lower level and the worship center with the installation of a large stair, consolidation of children’s ministries to the worship center level, and renovation of the choir suite and administration space.


First Centenary United Methodist Church
Chattanooga, Tennessee

Square Footage

New Construction – 16,482
Renovation – 29,530

The Bridge Community Center

The Bridge Community Center is a part of the ministry of the First Baptist Church of Peachtree City, Georgia. Architects for CDH designed this space after talking with church and community leaders. The idea was to meet the needs of this growing church while also meeting the needs of a progressive community located south of the Atlanta metro area.

This brightly designed 23,000 square foot public facility is adjacent to the church but open to anyone living in the Peachtree City community. It contains multi-purpose classrooms used for support groups and tutoring, meeting rooms, a walking track, a gymnasium, and a café with an open lobby seating area that offers free WiFi.

The youth area provides indoor recreational space that also includes a gym, a basketball court, and a theatrical stage with a state-of-the-art audio and video system used for performing arts and concerts.


Peachtree City Baptist Church
Peachtree City, Georgia

Square Footage



The Bridge Community Center from CDH Partners on Vimeo.

First Baptist Church – Canton, GA

The initial phase of the master plan created by CDH Partners included the construction of a multi-functional building that could be expanded with church growth. Architects incorporated an arts and crafts design that contains a palette of natural colors exclusively chosen to blend with the beauty of the surrounding landscape. Elements of stacked stone, along with touches of cherry-stained maple, and the inclusion of black iron hardware create a warm, inviting, and welcoming atmosphere.

The focal point of the church narthex is its grand fireplace, which serves as a gathering point for members and visitors. Large windows in the worship center and the narthex open up the interior of the building to the surrounding wooded scenery. A well-positioned, handcrafted chandelier echoes the detail found in the ironwork on handrails and entry door hardware.

Theatrical lighting and a state-of-the-art sound system also enhance the worship experience. This multi-functional worship center is equipped with a commercial kitchen that quickly transforms to accommodate tables and chairs for dinners and banquets. The children and youth areas contain theaters that are complete with theatrical sound and lighting systems. The building is designed with a main street hallway on each of the three levels.


First Baptist Church
Canton, Georgia


New 74 acre site
5 Phase Plan
Phase 1 – 77,200 sq. ft.

Site Development:

74 acres

The Vine Community Church

This church is located on 11.5 acres in the upscale community of Alpharetta, Georgia. After purchasing this spacious track of land, church leaders saw that there was a need for the development of a master plan that would be sufficient for future years of growth.

The architectural expression of the campus reflects a modern approach to church design while utilizing familiar historical elements. The exterior is designed to complement the natural setting of the worship center and is primarily comprised of brick and stone. Large areas of glazing were also used to enhance the stone detail on the worship center and to take full advantage of the church’s scenic surroundings. A tower feature adds presence, height, and natural light to the narthex.

The initial phase of the campus included the construction of a 600-seat multi-purpose facility that is used for worship and also as a fellowship hall. The design included the construction of a large kitchen, a nursery, pre-school, and elementary educational classrooms. A spacious lobby adjacent to the worship center doubles as a gathering and fellowship space for members and visitors. Playgrounds and well-positioned parking complete the campus.

Future phases include a 1200-seat sanctuary, a 150-seat chapel, a gymnasium, additional education space, administrative office space, a covered courtyard, expanded parking, and a foster home.


The Vine Community Church
Cumming, Georgia

Square Footage:

Phase 1 – 21,000
Full Plan – 73,000

Burnt Hickory Baptist Church

When the leadership of Burnt Hickory Baptist Church considered a move to its new 28-acre campus, they asked CDH to create a master plan that would include plenty of space for future growth and expansion. During the first phase, a 131,500 square foot traditional brick and stucco multi-purpose worship facility was constructed.

The 1285-seat worship center can be easily converted for banquet seating for 700. The facility serves an additional purpose as a full sport gymnasium. A welcome/resource center encourages casual interaction between members and serves as a place where visitors can pick up information about the church and upcoming activities.

Church leaders wanted a plan that provided adequate space for young families, who make up a large portion of the church’s demographics. This led to over 50,000 square feet of the space being designated to preschool, children, and youth.

Designers used a vibrant color palette for the youth area, which features as a 400-seat youth auditorium complete with video, audio and theatrical lighting capabilities, a game room, a 200-seat children’s drive–in theater, and The Solid Rock Café. Each area contains age appropriate themes.


Burnt Hickory Baptist Church
Powder Springs, Georgia

Square Footage:

Total Project 131,500
Children & Youth 50,000+

First Presbyterian Church – Dalton, GA

The First Presbyterian Church of Dalton, Georgia, is located in the northwest corner of the state. It has a rich history that began in 1847. Over the past few years, the church has experienced significant growth. When session leaders contacted CDH Partners, their greatest need was for a master plan that would help them expand their current church campus and enable them to meet the needs of a growing congregation and community.

The master plan for this traditionally designed church was divided into three phases. Phase one includes the construction of a new Family Life Center, which contains a youth lounge area, walking track, basketball court that also can be used for volleyball, and a weight room. During this phase, adult classrooms were remodeled, the existing fellowship hall expanded, and additional parking added. Two additional phases will follow.


First Presbyterian Church
Dalton, Georgia

Square Footage:



$5.9 million




Georgia ASID
Silver Award

Horizon Community Church

After purchasing a 160-acre golf course alongside the Little Miami River in Cincinnati, Horizon Community Church leaders worked with CDH to create a master plan for a new church campus. A primary objective was to preserve the beauty of the natural site while positing the new campus buildings in an area that takes full advantage of the pristine landscape. The complex was designed with sustainability in mind and features a cluster of buildings that resembles a European village. Energy is conserved through high performance thermal envelope and a selection of sustainable materials.

The design team worked closely with church leaders to create many of the outdoor features that clearly define the campus. The first phase is a traditional French Country design and sets the foundation for future growth and expansion. The focal point of the church narthex is a grand fireplace with a large hearth that serves as a gathering place for members.

Large windows in the worship center and in the narthex open up the interior of the building to the surrounding scenery. Well-positioned, handcrafted chandeliers along with the use of wood, ironwork, stone, and other natural finishes add a timeless detail. A 3.5-acre pond with 10,000 square feet of terraces is used as a place of spiritual reflection.

A 400-seat chapel that served as an initial worship space was included in the first phase of the master plan. A café, bride’s room, large gathering spaces, administrative offices, classrooms for children, educational spaces for adults, a warming kitchen, and parking to serve were also included in the initial construction.


Horizon Community Church
Cincinnati, Ohio

Square Footage:

Phase 1 – 65,000
Full Build Out – 160,000


Phase 1 – $19 million


Phase 1 – 2010


2012 Brick in Architectural Award – Silver

Johns Creek Baptist Church

Following the purchase of 23-acres in a popular suburb north of Atlanta, Georgia, leaders for Johns Creek Baptist Church turned to CDH Partners for a master plan that included the renovation of their existing facilities and the relocation of their worship center. The construction of a 500-seat interim sanctuary and educational facility was also included in the plan.

Church leaders placed a high emphasis on congregational involvement and fellowship within the community. Therefore, phases two and three of the master plan included the construction of additional educational space, gathering places, a choir room, and a spacious 1,000-seat-multipurpose fellowship hall, which easily transforms into a gym for recreation.

The final stage of the master plan included the construction of a 2,100-seat worship center. Traditional design features include a brick exterior combined with cast stone elements. A large three-story tower increases the visibility of the church campus and allows outside light to flow into the church’s atrium. Interior design elements included the use of painted millwork, wood, and a rich color platelet enhancing the worship experience.

The sanctuary is equipped with a hidden rear screen projection system that includes blackout shades for the large windows. State-of-the-art lighting, speakers, and audio controls are concealed within the ceiling bulkheads. A pipe organ designed from solid cherry by Italian artisans fills the space with magnificent sound.


John’s Creek Baptist Church
Alpharetta, Georgia

Site Development:

23 acres

Square Footage:

27,000 – Phase 1
34,700 – Phase 2
77,500 – Phase 3
61,400 – Phase 4


1998 – Phase 1
2000 – Phase 2
2000 – Phase 3
2006 – Phase 4

First United Methodist Church – Orlando

First United Methodist Church of Orlando is located in the city’s trendy downtown area and has had a presence in the downtown area for over 100 years. CDH architects and interior designers created a modern addition to the traditional styled sanctuary.

In April 2012, a spacious fellowship hall was completed. It contains an 82,000 square foot contemporary worship center with a seating capacity of 350. Also included in the design was a 125-seat chapel that contains a parlor, bride’s suite, music suite, adult and children’s classrooms, nurseries, and an administrative suite.

The fellowship hall was designed to be spacious containing areas where people can meet and gather. It also contains an upscale café and a full service kitchen. An oversized sculpture resembling Stonehenge creates an imaginative divider between the fellowship hall, kitchen, and information desk. It also serves as a recreation destination for children, who play on its painted metal towers.

A custom 16-foot light fixture hangs in the center of the fellowship hall and is highly visible through glass exterior walls, which form a three-story atrium and serves as a signature feature to the new ministry center. At night this striking feature becomes a luminary for the city of Orlando. The new structure is LEED certified. Energy costs were reduced by almost 18 percent through lighting selection, e–glass windows, high efficiency solutions for HVAC, high efficiency water reduction fixtures, and energy-star appliances.


First United Methodist Church
Orlando, Florida

Square Footage:



$17 million




PCI 2013 Design Awards
Best Religious Structure

Award of Excellence
2011 Golden Brick Awards
Downtown Orlando Partnership

LEED Silver Certification


Church Executive Magazine, May 2012
Worship Facilities Magazine May/June 2012

The Gathering

The Gathering has a rapidly growing congregation that supports a progressive style of worship. The church, located in Sevierville, Tennessee, provided an ideal opportunity for the CDH design team to create a master plan that takes full advantage of the surrounding mountainous environment. Church leaders asked designers to create a setting that would bring people together from all walks of life—members and visitors, churched and non-churched, congregation and community.

They also wanted this multipurpose facility to have the look and feel of a modern mountain lodge—one that was highly visible to the community. Designers created an eye-catching space where the outdoors transitions inside and is blended with natural surfaces and earth tone finishes. Comfortable seating, a stone fireplace along with wood columns, and timber-beamed ceilings add to the lodge atmosphere.

The structure’s highly visible glass exterior walls form a two-story atrium that is topped with a dynamic silver cross serving as a signature feature to this state-of-the-art ministry center. At night when the church is illuminated, the church becomes a striking feature against the black backdrop of the Smoky Mountains.

Phase one included the construction of this 42,000-square foot contemporary multipurpose facility that currently seats 1150. It contains an administration suite, educational classrooms, children’s ministry zone, bookstore, and a cafe. In a future phase this multipurpose facility is scheduled to become the church’s fellowship hall.


The Gathering
Sevierville, Tennessee

Square Footage:

38,718 Multi-purpose Building
28,250 The Lodge (includes 2400 for outdoor dining)


2010 WFX Solomon Awards
Best Church Design 800-2000 seats