In communities across the U.S., churches that have lost their congregations are being bought up and converted into artsy condos and homes.
As residences, they often retain many of the design details that make them look like houses of worship, including steeples and bell towers, distinctive entrance door and windows and, in some cases, sacred spaces. Choir balconies become lofts, altars become eating areas.
Yet it’s no easy task to turn these churches into livable spaces. Most are just big empty boxes where parishioners once sat in rows and rows of pews. They need to be completely reconstructed to serve as a normal home with separate rooms, bedrooms with doors and shower-equipped bathrooms. Some larger churches get divided up into several condos or apartments, while the exterior remains almost untouched.