Collection by Kelsey Keith

LGBT Synagogue in New York by ARO


One week ago, as New Yorkers celebrated Pride Week, Architecture Research Office (ARO) announced its plans for a new synagogue, built for the 40-year-old LGBT religious institution Congregation Beit Simchat Torah. Formerly based in the West Village, in a hidden courtyard of West Beth, the congregation sought a more visible space that would raise its activism-heavy profile. The Cooper-Hewitt Design Award-winning firm led by Adam Yarinsky, Stephen Cassell and Kim Yao, with Cassell acting as principal on the project, helped CBST find 50 feet of street front for the new synagogue in a historic Cass Gilbert building on West 30th Street. Find out more of what's in store in our slideshow.

Stephen Cassell explains that CBST's rabbi felt like their previous home was "like trying to find a 1970s lesbian...
Inset: Cass Gilbert's rendering of the Assyrian-style tower at 130 West 30th Street in Manhattan.
The sanctuary is backed by a textured concrete wall, illuminated by skylights.
The space features a removable bimah which allows for flexibility from a sacred space to a hall for life-cycle events...
Cassell explains that even at 17,000 square feet, the 300-member congregation could have used 25,000 square feet of...
And just for fun, an advertisement for Atlantic Terra Cotta (at the time the largest architectural terra cotta supplier...

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