Members of the growing Bethel Assembly of God have broken ground on a 19,000-square-foot addition that includes a gym and three stories of classrooms.
The addition is expected to accommodate the 1,100-member church at 515 E. Wilson Blvd. "for the immediate future," said Pastor Terry Broadwater.
He said he and others at the church had been pushing for the addition for more than a year.
"We had been talking about and realized it was something we really needed to do," he said.
The present Assembly of God building includes a 1,300-seat sanctuary which is 10,000 square feet, a Christian education wing measuring 40 feet by 80 feet and a 100-by-80 assembly hall.
The $850,000 project will be financed with bank loans and contributions by parishioners, he said.
"People have seen the need and been very supportive," said Broadwater, who has been pastor at Bethel Assembly of God for about a year and a half.