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Shalom, SynaCondo, Midtown Temple's Move to Stay Afloat

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Societal views towards religion are changing. Congregations of many faiths are seeing dwindling attendance and that means coming up with innovative solutions just to keep the houses of worship open. The Park Avenue Christian Church is replacing its parish hall with an 16-story-tall Extell-developed residential building and the Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church on the Upper West Side is expanding and re-working its structure to add apartments. Well, a Midtown synagogue has come up with a potential solution to keep itself afloat: the SynaCondo. This isn't to say the congregation will follow through with the plan—it's just an idea.

The Midtown West congregation has been working with Esther Sperber of Studio ST Architects on the idea for over a year. The proposal calls for the demolition of the current temple and construction of a new structure built into the bottom of a 19-story condominium building. In this plan, the sanctuary and three classrooms would be on the first lower level with a synagogue social hall with kitchen, plus a condo multi-purpose room on the second lower level. Meanwhile, dual lobbies, a chapel, and a "sukkah garden" would be on the ground floor and more classrooms and a library/lounge would be on the second floor. One- and two-bedroom residential units would run from the third floor on up, with duplexes on 16/17 and 18/19.
· Studio ST Architects [Official]