Har-El Synagogue + Community Centre is nestled in a stand of second-growth forest located at the intersection of two major highways in mountainous West Vancouver. The facility spans a small salmon-bearing creek that swells to river-like proportions during the Spring thaw runoff.

Originally built in 1998, renovation of the sanctuary and social spaces were undertaken in 2010 and the addition of a social lounge was completed in 2013. The facility now measures 1,860 square metres and accommodates worship, educational, cultural and social functions.

Judaic symbolism features prominently through the use of constituent markers that embody and perpetuate the historical concept of the Ark of the Covenant and the Temple of Jerusalem. The markers were developed and abstracted from religious, artistic and architectural expressions that have been interpreted and expounded upon in synagogue design for thousands of years.

recognition

1998
Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia Medal in Architecture
Canadian Wood Council Ron Thom Award
American Wood Council Merit Award

1997
Canadian Architect Award of Excellence

original approach across creek

original approach across creek

classroom bridge

classroom bridge

school entry

school entry

social lounge at battered wall

social lounge at battered wall

social lounge fireplace

social lounge fireplace

yahrzeit wall

yahrzeit wall

rabbi study

rabbi study

view to original courtyard

view to original courtyard

original lobby

original lobby

gallery

gallery

yahrzeit alcove

yahrzeit alcove

ablution

ablution