New York, New York
Renderings: Ryan McLaughlin
While working with a synagogue in New York, we pursued a speculative design that creates a new, shared building, for a residential condominium and the synagogue. This “SynaCondo” typology is relevant to many religious organizations which development opportunities. We demonstrate
that these congregations can create beautiful, functional and spiritual spaces within a mixed use development.
The existing sanctuary of our client is located on the second floor (no elevator) but does not have exterior views. Relocating the sanctuary to the
first lower level, under the rear garden, allows us to utilize this subterranean space, while providing better access and better lighting.
The synagogue will maintain exclusive use of the rear garden for recreation and for building a Sukkah (temporary hut) during the holiday of Sukkot. The garden landscaping is structured around a series of skylights which bring daylight to the sanctuary nested below. Two large free-formed skylights mark the sanctuary entry and the focal point of the ark and prayer table. A perimeter skylight washes the interior curving wood walls with sensual, warm light and creates a meandering bench along the garden wall above.From the street, the synagogue appears as a glowing, warm, wood structure emanating from the solid gray stone condominium. Upon entering, the visitor is welcomed by the serene view ofthe rear garden and the intimate daily chapel. A generous curved wood stair leads to the lower level of the sanctuary and social hall. The synagogue’s education center (library, seminar rooms and offices) are located on the second.
The condominium is a luxury residential building comprised of one and two bedroom apartments comfortably designed. A number of unique penthouse apartments with views and terraces are located on the tenth floor and the upper four floors.temperature by natural ventilation between the two skins in summer or adding insulation in the winter time.