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Vladimir Radutny Architects

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Project Description

From AIA Chicago:


The design approach for the Chabad House of Toledo and its multitude of programs starts with a strategic site organization, and the integration of existing typography within the building's scheme. As a result of this site specific strategy, the main building volume is placed at the highest point on this long narrow site, centrally located from front to back. The building becomes a threshold between the outward public zone and a more secluded, private area beyond. In order to respect the low profile of the surrounding residential neighborhood, the educational program of the complex is nestled partially below grade and screened with native vegetation. As a result of this move the overall structure appears as one story volume from the main pedestrian street.

The overall building form is the result of a rotation in the upper programmed volume. This shift allows the Center to face directly east, optimizing the direction of daily prayers. This configuration enables the complex to appear as though it opens-up and reaches-out, similar to the role Chabad plays within the Toledo community. To further reinforce the inviting character of the facility, the façade treatment softens the building’s rigid form. It evokes a sense of change and gentleness via the interplay of light and shadow on its rippling wood-clad folds.
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