The Auckland Hebrew Congregation and Kadimah College have occupied their award winning Greys Avenue building since its completion in 1968.
The building, designed by Architect John Goldwater, has received three NZIA Awards since its completion and a category ‘A’ heritage listing from Auckland City.
Over the last 40 years the Grey’s Avenue building’s use has evolved, and the community’s recent planned moves to another location failed to eventuate. The buildings have accordingly been long overdue for refurbishment, and new ways of using them are required.
The brief was to accommodate the Congregation’s and School’s needs in an up to date and user friendly facility, while navigating the sensitivities of a loved and cherished building. The project delivers the majority of the existing heritage building fabric restored for future use. In a bold gesture, new upper level classrooms ring the main Synagogue space defining a central void to the Synagogue below. The resulting refurbished Synagogue draws strongly on the architecture that first inspired Goldwater, while the integration of education and spirituality into this spatial confluence symbolises the core values of the Jewish culture.
2010 NZIA – Auckland Architecture Award Heritage
The word ‘schule’ which the Jewish people use to refer to the Synagogue derives from the old German word for ‘school’. Education and worship are at the heart of Jewish belief, and we symbolised this by wrapping learning spaces around the central synagogue. The existing building hosts a legacy of art and cultural artefacts which enrich and authenticate this loved building.