Santa Ana, CA
Architect: Berliner Architects
Product: Pilkington Profilit™ channel glass system
The central mission behind the Campus Revitalization Project for Temple Beth Sholom in Santa Ana, California, was two-fold: 1) tie the school and temple congregation into one single community, and 2) create a safe and peaceful place for members to gather. To accomplish these goals, Temple Beth Sholom tasked Berliner Architects with creating a beautiful center that would enhance the grounds of the Santa Ana campus while representing Jewish culture and history through architecture.
To help reinvent the space, Berliner Architects selected Pilkington Profilit™ channel glass from Technical Glass Products (TGP) to enclose the circular portion of the chapel. The linear "U-shaped" cast-glass channels are self-supporting and mounted in an extruded perimeter frame. They extend skyward above the chapel's base, their translucent form brightening the interior by allowing for the transfer of soft, even and glare-free light. According to Berliner Architects, the "continuously changing light and shadow create a sense of connection with the unseen." The channel glass façade also helps bridge the chapel to the outside world while still maintaining a sense of privacy within the temple.
From a functional standpoint, the slender frames and narrow glazed segments allow for tight radii—as low as 6'6"—giving the channels the ability to create the ethereal curve. The aluminum framing is stretch-formed into a radius and glazing contractors then segment the cast-glass channels around the framing to achieve the desired arc.
Today, the thoughtfully planned façade and chapel help give patrons a sense of peace and connection as they visit the integrated campus. This feeling was a key focus of the design, according to Berliner Architects, who wanted to create a sense of home for the congregation and the larger community. "Today parents dropping their kids off at school don't run off to do errands but hang out in the living room to schmooze with other temple members - a realization of the temple's central mission," said the firm.
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