2013 Award of Honor,
AIA Georgia Chapter
Through a collaboration with BLDGS architects the metal structure and surrounding site, which had once been an efficient operation to repair and repaint automobiles, is transformed into an active synagogue for the Congregation Or Hadash. The former landscape of efficiency provided vehicular access to every face of the building by surrounding the structure with asphalt paving. 79% of the site had been covered with an impermeable surface.
The initial site strategy was to transform the sea of asphalt into a dynamic, performative landscape that offers the Jewish congregation a multiplicity of functions while remembering the former uses of the site. The expanse of asphalt is perforated, allowing water to permeate the ground again. The removed asphalt is carefully extracted and reappropriated on the site as long seat walls that provide a distinction between vehicles and pedestrians. The building is also perforated to allow the adapted landscape to engage the new worship and classroom spaces.