SIMSBURY – At a time when some other parishes are closing their doors or merging, St. Mary Parish blessed and broke ground on June 23 for a new structure that will serve the parish ministries, activities and elementary school.
The new facility, dubbed the Campus Connection project, is the first significant improvement to the Hopmeadow Street campus in more than 30 years. It will provide accessibility and nearly 6,000 square feet of new space. Construction on the one-story facility is expected to begin in July and to be completed within a year.
“This is a significant milestone in the life of our parish and we can be proud that this project is moving forward,” said Father Frank Matera, pastor of St. Mary.
“We are fortunate to have a vibrant parish that requires additional space for our many ministries and activities as well as our elementary school, he said, adding that the Campus Connection meets objectives identified as critical for the parish's future, including handicap accessibility, additional space for the parish and school, and improved traffic flow.
"This is an exciting time for our parish as we build a tangible sign of our commitment to our Catholic faith and community," Father Matera said. "I am grateful for the generosity of so many people that has made this project a reality.”
Over the past five-plus years, St. Mary’s has identified needs for the church and school, worked with an architect and general contractors to create a viable plan and embarked on a fundraising effort to support that plan.
Approval from the Town of Simsbury and the Archdiocese of Hartford was received late in the spring. The estimated total cost of the project is $4.1 million. Moser, Pilon, Nelson architects LLC is the architect for the project and BBE Bartlett, Brainard, Eacott is the general contractor and construction manager.
St. Mary’s Church has been serving the needs of the Catholic community in Simsbury since 1936. A dynamic parish that currently serves 1,600 families, St. Mary’s has a strong commitment to religious education and the only Catholic elementary school in the Farmington Valley, as well as a vibrant religious education program for young people in the public school system.