The new four-story Lincoln Square Synagogue on 68th Street and Amsterdam Avenue is complete, replacing the squat spaceship-looking synagogue down the block.
The new synagogue cost $50 million, with $20 million coming from an anonymous donor and $20 million more from American Continental Property, the developer that plans to build a 50 to 60 story tower at the old synagogue site (at right), DNAinfo reported.
The new synagogue has a big glass facade, a 5,000-square foot ballroom and an in-house Kosher caterer. It will raise money by renting out the ballroom for events, and it hopes to attract more young people. Then it will subject those young people to questions like “So are you seeing someone? I know this wonderful young man at the Lincoln Square Synagogue…”
Last weekend, congregants walked from the old synagogue to the new one, a procession captured in the photo below by CK.
Top photo courtesy of DNAinfo. Old Lincoln Square photo via Wikipedia.
Not mentioned is the interesting trivia that the old L.S. Synagogue was the place where, in 1973, the young Elena Kagan, later to become Supreme Court Justice Kagan, had her Bat Mitzvah (her childhood home was W. 75th @ West End). And, according to Wikipedia, even then she was a fighter for equal rights, persuading Rabbi Riskin that a girl was indeed entitled to a formal coming-of-age ceremony the same as any boy.
Personally, the new synagogue is much more architecturally interesting than the old, which itself was a product of its era. Let’s hope that the proposed 50-60 story tower is also architecturally inspiring, as innnovative architecture is just one of the things that make our city so wonderful.
Thanks be to God — a new house of worship rather than another bank.