One of the central features of many churches is the aisles between church pews. Many churches go a traditional route with just one aisle down the middle of the church and smaller spaces on either wall of the church. However, larger churches need more aisles than smaller churches and you might have a uniquely shaped space that calls for different pew layouts to fit the most people. In these situations, consider putting in more aisles.
Central aisles may be the best choice if your church services have processionals through the congregation to the altar. In churches where the weekly service begins with the acolytes and clergy processing to the altar, a center aisle may seem like a necessity.
Even if it’s not a weekly occurrence at your church during Sunday services, a center aisle is nice for processionals during holidays, pageants, weddings, baptisms, confirmations, or other events. While you can work with two aisles by dividing the choir or having the clergy use one aisle and the choir use the other, a center aisle allows more dramatic effects. If your church has a lot of income from weddings, getting rid of the central aisle will probably reduce your profits as a venue.
However, a central aisle might not be the most efficient way to meet seating needs. Larger spaces where three or four pew lengths can comfortably fit often find that central aisles aren’t right for their community because seating is more important. These large churches need to think about how easily congregation members can move around into pews, exit at the end of services, and socialize before and after services. If processionals are still important in these churches, the procession can often be split into two to go down both central aisles at the same time.
Deciding if you need a central aisle or more aisles created by adding more pews has more to do with your worship style than anything else. If you’re unsure what’s best for your church and the space you have to work with, give us a call at 877-739-7453 or contact us and we’ll give you our advice and help you make the best decision for your church.