June 05, 2016 by: Ben Heimsath

On Springdale Road, across from the Austin Police Department’s East Substation, a small church stands at the corner. The Springdale Church of God in Christ will be celebrating its 62nd anniversary this year, according to its Facebook page. From the outside appearance, it is likely this building is the congregation’s first structure, with much of the original image in tact.


The building conveys a simple profile of a church, with an extended wooden cross dressing up the front façade. The front canopy also appears to date from the original church and shows a bit of ornamentation. The rest of the building is no nonsense, with simple window and fascia trim.   What appears to be vinyl siding was sensitively installed to maintain the look of the original wood siding. As I’ve blogged over these past months, many neighborhood churches in East Austin have gone through significant changes or upgrades over the years. Except for the new doors, it appears that Springdale Church of God in Christ has chosen to leave most everything as it was.


When the architects designed the new police station, I wonder if they took account of this church. As I was taking pictures it occurred to me that when the officers start their shift, they are all sent on their way directly lined up with image of this classic, historic church. Perhaps this is a subliminal way to address tensions between the police and the African American community. At the very least, it seems to me to at least a small blessing for both the church and the officers.


Springdale Church of God in Christ, 767 Springdale Road, Austin, Texas

Worship Space/ Sacred Architecture/ Austin/ Historic Preservation