The National Trust for Historic Preservation, Honor Award, 2001
New York Construction News, Restoration Project of the Year, 2001
Preservation League of New York, Project Excellence Award, 2001
Lucy G. Moses Preservation Award, 2001
Restoring A National Historic Landmark
Designed by architect Henry Fernbach in 1872, Central Synagogue is the one of the oldest synagogues in the United States and the longest in continual usage in New York City. The building was designated a New York City Landmark in 1966, added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1970 and designated a National Historic Landmark in 1975.
On August 28, 1998, a fire developed during building renovations that destroyed most of the timber roof and water from the firefighting effort caused additional damage. Within hours of the fire, we were on a team working to survey structural damage to the synagogue and design a temporary scaffolding-supported roof to protect the interior.
We provided building envelope renewal and historic preservation services to DPK&A Architects for the 70,000-sf restoration.
- In addition to the temporary roof, our scope of the also project included reinforcing the original timber truss system, excavating the cellar to create a larger public gathering space below the sanctuary and integrating a modern HVAC system into the historic building.
- The scope of the project – with more than 700 workers from 70 firms – was enormous; and its three-year, fast-track schedule required careful coordination and cooperation among all team members.
- As the synagogue’s chief rabbi said during a gathering of all of the construction workers to celebrate the completion of the restoration, this “miracle” is a tribute to the level of professionalism and craftsmanship of the New York construction and design trades.