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Written by Heidi Schwartz. Posted in Question Of The Week

Tagged: ,

Published on May 23, 2011 with No Comments

Q. Our church is in the process of remodeling and adding square footage. We’ve come up against a parking issue with the city because of the capacity of our sanctuary.

The sanctuary isn’t changing in our construction plans, but the capacity makes us short of parking spaces based on city requirements. If we could cut down seating capacity, all of our parking problems would be solved.

I’ve had some interesting conversations and correspondence with prominent manufacturers and providers of church seating. In the past, the standard was 18″ or 19″ per person seated in a pew. I’m told that standard has been increased, due to the “growing” of Americans.

Can you help me estimate the proper seating requirements for our facility and town? Anything you can offer on the subject will be greatly appreciated—we’re in a jam!

Judy Jordan
Facility Planning Team Member
Unity Church of the Valley
Vacaville, CA

This question was originally published in the October 2009 issue of Today’s Facility Manager. Read Elledge’s response here. Share your feedback and suggestions in the LEAVE A COMMENT section below.

About Heidi Schwartz

Heidi Schwartz

Schwartz joined Group C Media in April 1989 as managing editor of Today's Facility Manager (TFM) magazine (formerly Business Interiors) where she was subsequently promoted to editor/co-publisher of the monthly trade magazine for facility management professionals. In September 2012, she took over the newly created position of internet director for TFM's parent company, Group C Media, where she is charged with developing content and creating online strategies for TFM and its sister publication, Business Facilities. Schwartz can be reached at

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