Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands (LDS) has completed its competition-winning JW3 Jewish Community Centre
As well as a nine-floor apartment block and youth centre on the north end of the site, the scheme on London’s Finchley Road includes an 268-seat auditorium, cinema, offices, cafes and dance and art studios.
At ground level along Finchley Road a steel and glass wall shields a piazza which LDS says can be used for weddings, markets and even ice skating.
The practice beat Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, Foreign Office Architects and Rafael Viñoly to land the scheme which has been funded by philanthropist Dame Vivien Duffield who has also backed Hepworth Wakefield, the Holburne Museum in Bath and the Turner Contemporary.
Six years after LDS bagged the win in 2007, the JW3 finally opens this weekend.
Previous story (AJ 19.04.2007)
Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands lands new Jewish Community Centre
The practice was chosen ahead of Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, Foreign Office Architects and Rafael Viñoly in the contest to mastermind the ‘architecturally ambitious’ 7,000m2 Finchley Road project (Top names in frame for new Jewish Centre).
Hailed as a flagship building, the new JCC will house a ‘wide range of educational, social, health and recreational activities for the Jewish and wider communities’ and will sit opposite the Camden Arts Centre.
Nick Viner, chief executive of the JCC, said: ‘In a very strong field, Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands clearly demonstrated thoughtful and creative responses to the brief, some innovative transport ideas, and excellent thinking on ways to link the JCC building to the local community.
‘We were very impressed with their team and look forward to working with them on this exciting and ground-breaking project.’
One of the scheme’s main champions, Vivien Duffield of the Clore Duffield Foundation, is in no doubt that they have landed the right practice for the job.
She said: ‘Ever since I visited the JCC in Manhattan, I have been inspired to help set up something similar in London.
‘With this site and these architects we’re getting closer to delivering our vision.’
As well as Duffield and Viner, the competition jury included CABE’s Paul Finch, JCC chair Andrew Franklin, Stuart Lipton and Davis Langdon senior partner Paul Morrell.