Here are three recent articles about JRC’s new green synagogue building:
A review by the Chicago Tribune’s architectural critic, Blair Kamin:
Green architecture is all the rage today, but a LEED-rated building is more a technical achievement than a work of artistry. This adventurous synagogue doesn’t match the aesthetic standard set by the great Spertus building, but at its best, it fuses the structural, the sustainable and the spiritual into a powerful whole. A blessed thing, that, because it adds a rich new sense of possibility to the no-rules field of Jewish architecture.
A feature in the Chicago Jewish News (you have to scroll down a bit to read it…):
(Rabbi) Rosen, who shepherded the project from inception to completion, said being in the building at last was “an indescribable feeling. It feels like we’ve come home,” he said in a recent phone conversation. “We’re back in Evanston, in the home we’ve been working so hard to build and dreaming of for so long.” Numerous congregants played crucial roles in bringing the dream to fulfillment, he said.
But, he added, now he and the congregation have another part to play: being a role model to other congregations. “As wonderful as it is for our congregation to receive these kudos, that is secondary. We want to be a role model for other congregations, to create a movement. That’s what this is all about,” he said.
This piece in the Evanston Review:
The Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation achieved much more than a construction goal in erecting a new synagogue, built upon the site of the former house of worship at 303 Dodge Ave.
The congregation, known for its social action efforts, also sought to embody members’ commitment to Tikkun HaNefesh V’Olam — a principle in Judaism that speaks of the healing and repair of the individual and world at large — in erecting what is regarded as the “most environmentally conscious synagogue in North America.”