Finegold Alexander Wins 2 Interfaith Design Awards!

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FIRM NEWS | Interfaith Design Awards, Published in Boston Real Estate Times

We are proud to receive two Interfaith Design (ID) Awards, which were originally announced in ID’s publication Faith and Form! Senior Principal Maurice Finegold, FAIA and Principal Tony Hsiao, AIA accepted the awards at the 2019 AIA Conference on Architecture in Las Vegas last week.

Temple Israel | Omaha, NE

Temple Israel in Omaha, Nebraska won a Religious Architecture New Facilities Award.

As the first building to be completed in what is known as the Tri-Faith Initiative, Temple Israel expresses a commitment to social justice, a principal mission of the community and the synagogue. The Tri-Faith Initiative is a campus of three Abrahamic faith congregations that have chosen to come together to embrace a future committed to community, understanding, and trust.

The design of the building grew from the three main functions of a synagogue as a place of prayer, assembly and study, expressed in the composition of 3 separate volumes, each scaled and detailed to represent its function. These volumes are unified by an abundance of light and are organized informally around a central gathering space. The co-mingling of the generations enhances a spirit of warmth, intimacy and community, values the congregation cherishes.

The sanctuary was conceived as a lantern, to mark and illuminate; its upper half is sheathed in translucent glass and it glows within and without, spreading light and enlightenment.

B’nai Jehoshua Elohim Synagogue | Deerfield, IL

B’nai Jehoshua Elohim Synagogue won an award for the adaptive use of an existing building in religious architecture.
Finegold Alexander repurposed half of a mundane office complex into a synagogue for a 100-year-old Reform Congregation of more than 1000 families. The existing building presented a unique challenge – the interlocked one-story L-shaped buildings capturing a courtyard were purchased with strict perimeter and parking restrictions. The traditional trifold synagogue functions of worship, study and assembly required 70,000 sq. ft. including four separate and distinct spaces for worship.

The design solution reimagined and transformed these ordinary offices into a sequence of spaces that flow from one to another, each supporting its unique function, and creating a spirituality of place that reflects the culture and values of this congregation. The entrance leads directly to a multi-functional “Village Center”. It serves as a gathering space bustling with activity and includes a library, a coffee bar, a computer area, and a variety of gathering nodes forming “pockets of holiness” as the clergy had requested. Adjacent to the landscaped courtyard, this space is enhanced by an abundance of light and openness and serves as an orienting space leading to all functions, including the rabbinic suite and the school.

Liturgical Art, both new and relocated have been integrated into all of the spaces throughout. Symbolizing continuity and innovation, the eternal light in the social (sacred) hall is a refurbished lantern from their first synagogue and is surrounded by a collar of text. The sanctuary eternal light was designed by one of the principal architects in collaboration with the donor. It is inscribed with L’Dor V’Dor, “from generation to generation” and represents the continuity of the congregation and the transcendence of the divine.