SynaCondo, a building which is both a residential condominium complex and a synagogue in one. Sounds crazy, right. Well the people from Studio ST have created this exact thing for Manhattan’s new Hudson Yards.
The building will be located at 347 West 34th Street and have 19 stories. It is designed in this way so as to provide a new home for the West Side Jewish Center which currently resides at this address.
New York Yimby explains that there will be a 2,600-square-foot social hall and associated back-of-house areas for patrons of the synagogue. Another 1,200 square feet will serve as a flexible multi-purpose room for future occupants. Floor LL1 above will support a 2,000-square-foot sanctuary with two freeform skylights to promote the flow of natural light into the space. Additional areas include 1,425 square feet of classroom space and the sanctuary library. The second level will house an additional 1,450 square feet of classroom area, 670 square feet of office space, a 600-square-foot library lounge, 300 square feet of administrative space, and views of the Sukkah Garden.
Studio ST explained the project:
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 of the 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.