Christ Chapel – Hillsdale College

Hillsdale, Michigan

New Construction

Sheet Metal Contractor

Heather and Little Ltd.
Markham, Ontario


Duncan G. Stroik, Architect
South Bend, Indiana

General Contractor

Weigand Construction
Fort Wayne, Indiana

Sheet Metal Contractor

Braman Roofing Company
Hillsdale, Michigan

The Christ Chapel is a new chapel on the grounds of Hillsdale College in Michigan built from 2017-2019. The design of Christ Chapel was inspired by Central Hall, the historic focal point of the campus. The key elements of Central Hall’s exterior will all find counterparts in the Chapel, making it an ideal architectural complement. The entrance portico is formed by eight limestone columns crowned with a 32-foot self-supporting brick dome cladded in copper standing seam panels and topped with a 5-foot decorative copper pine cone finial. The copper roof panels and the ornamental pine cone finial were designed and fabricated in Toronto, Canada and shipped to the site in Michigan. The copper dome panels were laid out in a pattern consisting of 3-courses tapered pans with standing seam locks. The dome included a raised rib pans every seven tapered pans to achieve the final aesthetic and the roof's water tightness. Each panel had to be carefully laid out by hand and have a compound curve applied to fit the dome structure in Michigan. The pinecone finial is 5’x3’ foot and was made using a traditional technique called repoussé which entails hand-hammering a copper sheet into a handmade pinecone mold. This is the same technique used on the Statue of Liberty, although on a much smaller scale. The Heather & Little team worked alongside the contractor and architect to achieve a beautiful and correct final result that connects the future with the past.