New Theology Complex for Hout Bay

The Reformed Church of Hout Bay has been granted building approval and is nearing completion of a R60m new Church and Theology Complex in Victoria Road on their Bischopsford property.

The new complex will comprise a 230 seater church, a new bookshop (to replace the existing bookshop) with close to 10 thousand titles on offer, a coffee shop, and Sunday School that will serve as an ECD centre for 54 children during the week. As these building near completion, another building is being developed which will be the new theological college, operating under the name: Trinity Reformed College. The college building is expected to be completed by December 2021. A new main entrance to the complex is being constructed further down Victoria Road away from the busy traffic circle at the Hout Bay/Main Road intersection. The entire premise will have secure on-site parking for visitors and church-goers.

The Reformed Church of Hout Bay is a gospel-preaching church that preaches a message of good news that Jesus has come to save sinners. The Reformed Church of Hout Bay gathers every Sunday morning in the church building for a time of corporate worship. The church affirms the authority and sufficiency of the Bible for life and godliness, the centrality of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God for the whosoever (John 3:16). All are welcome to visit and worship the resurrected Christ.

As a reformed church we hold to the five solas of the Reformation that proclaim that we are saved by God’s grace alone, on the basis of Christ alone, received through faith alone, to the glory of God alone, with Scripture alone as the only, final, decisive, authority on truth. We also subscribe to the Westminster Confession of Faith and its larger and shorter catechisms as the doctrinal confession on which we stand.

The theological college will provide training for aspiring pastors from all over the world, especially the African continent. Dr. Mark Jones, who is currently residing in Vancouver, is actively involved in the development and planning of the college.

The coffee shop situated under the shady trees will be open to all and will be an ideal spot for that quiet morning coffee and croissant or after dropping the children off at the nursery school which is situated close by on the site.

The existing stables and paddocks are being retained and will be made available to local residents for the stabling of horses.

Project architect, Julie Chase, said that the Bischopsford site was selected by the client after viewing a number of sites in the area. It was chosen for its natural tranquillity, lush landscaping and the open space of the paddocks. All the elements presented by this site seemed perfect for the vision of the Reformed Church of Hout Bay Theology Complex.

It was an important part of the overall concept to maintain the existing vegetation, ponds, paddocks and to position the new buildings so as to have as little impact as possible on the existing flora and fauna.

The buildings are formed in a cluster towards to higher end of the sight. The church is nestled closer to the river away from the roads and is accessible via a boardwalk over one of the ponds.

The seminary building, book shop, and coffee shop flow onto a central podium that overlooks the paddocks and surrounding mountains. This area forms a breakout space with seating under large shady trees creating an open area to encourage discussion or mindful contemplation.

The buildings reflect the Hout Bay rural vernacular, being simple form barn-style buildings constructed using uncomplicated raw materials. Brickwalls are bagged; concrete, local stone and timber are left untreated. Metal sheeting covers high pitched roofs with open ceilings creating generous airy volumes to internal spaces.

The civils contract, the roadway and parking areas, as well as the installation of the underground services is nearing completion and has been carried out by RDC Civils under the direction of Icon Consulting Engineers.

The building contract was awarded to LD Projects, and despite the delays caused by the lockdown associated with the Covid-19 pandemic, the builders remain confident of completing Phase 1 of the project by end of May 2021. Phase 2 of the development has already commenced with the college building. Whereas the ECD Centre and a satellite office for security will be built during 2021.

Bischopsford plans to be a blessing to all the people of Hout Bay and surrounding areas in one way or another.

Bischopsford Reformed Church of Hout Bay: 2 Victoria Road, Hout Bay.

Contact: 021 791 1090/021 791 0606 www.bischopsford.com