Hebrew Union College

Jerusalem, Israel, 1998 / Middle East / Health & Education

The Hebrew Union College Campus was conceived in the tradition of Mediterranean courtyard clusters, omnipresent in the Old City of Jerusalem. Unlike the Northern European tradition of free-standing buildings on a campus green, the buildings on the Hebrew Union College Campus form one continuous and attached fabric, within which a series of interconnecting courtyards comprise the life and spine of the community.

The Hebrew Union College Campus includes classroom facilities for 300 students, a major library, an archaeological research institute, a museum, and a youth center and hostel accommodating 240 people.

The buildings are grouped around three major courtyards. Circulation is provided by two-level arcades, the lower level serving faculty and students, the upper one serving visitors to the museum and a planned synagogue. Walled gardens at the perimeter of the campus provide outdoor ‘rooms’ for teaching and study. Walls of rough-cut golden Jerusalem limestone define the boundary of the campus and link the new construction to the city beyond. Within the campus, stone arcades and sunscreens contrast with the austere reinforced concrete frames of the individual buildings. Glass and aluminum infill panels reflect the yellow stone and complete a silver and gold palette that echoes the colors of the city’s shrines.