While many large churches within Chicago city limits continue witnessing declining attendance, suburban places of worship — particularly of the Evangelical flavor — continue growing at a fast pace. Willow Creek Community Church, which went from holding services in a movie theater to expanding to six locations throughout the Chicagoland area, is looking to expand its footprint in Crystal Lake by taking over the 193,000-square-foot shuttered Oak Industries facility at 100 S. Main Street.
Last week, the Crystal Lake Planning and Zoning Commission voted unanimously in favor of the proposal, which would allow the megachurch to open its new campus on the 25 acre industrial site. The new campus will include a main auditorium with 2,000 seats, as well as a youth worship auditorium with 400 seats. Marcus Bieschke, lead pastor of the Crystal Lake campus tells Christian Post that they hope to have the new campus open and operating by the autumn of 2017.