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Let's celebrate all we've accomplished!

Posted on Monday, August 19, 2019

As we make progress on our phased renovation and replacement projects throughout the Temple’s nearly 60-year-old buildings and grounds, it’s good to review where we’ve been and where we’re going. In addition, as all of the facility projects are funded through donations by you — our supportive congregant donors — it’s important to recognize and celebrate all we’ve already accomplished!

Actually, I’ve been stopped a number of times over the past year and asked:

  • What have we actually accomplished in the past 10+ years with the Lindner Building Fund and Livnot Funds?
  • What are the current ongoing projects; it seems like we’re always “under construction”?
  • Why is it so important to raise additional funds for the total renovation of our education building?
  • Are there other updates and improvements needed that are yet to be funded and addressed?

What have we actually accomplished in the past 10 years (2008-18) with the Building Fund and Livnot Funds?

We’ve accomplished quite a lot, which has changed the appearance, condition, and operation of both the interior and exterior of our 90,000 square foot building and 21-acre grounds!

Exterior Completed:

  • Roof reconstruction and replacements — Main Building and Education Center
  • Wall repairs/replacement of decorative limestone band, brick, and concrete exterior
  • May Chapel and Gall Sanctuary handicap entry ramp/railing updates
  • New pedestrian lighting at May Chapel and Gall Sanctuary walkways and entries
  • Re-landscaping at May, Gall, and Brodsky Circle planting areas

Interior Completed:

  • Gall Sanctuary restoration/renovation including new carpet, seating, ceiling, lighting and new low, demountable bimah, ark and handicap access; reconfiguration with semicircular layout, movable, individual seating; new structured entry/ greeting area and expansion seating zones; new sound system; and restoration of the historic 1962 bimah and ark for High Holy Days use
  • Isserman Auditorium restoration with new ceiling, lighting, sound system, refinished terrazzo floor
  • Kriegshaber and Schoenberg Foyers restoration and renovation including terrazzo, new rugs, new furniture and furnishings, ceilings and lighting, and consolidated donor recognition signage
  • The Edison Bridge refresh with new blinds, carpet, paint, and lighting
  • Main hallways restoration and renovation including brick and terrazzo restoration, lighting and ceilings, removal of wall panels, and implementation of flexible art display system
  • First phase of HVAC replacement in one third of the Main Building area
  • LED lighting conversion for modern, energy efficient lighting throughout
  • Handelman Gathering Space/reception desk conversion and renovation of the former Library
  • Restroom renovation and remodeling of the two sets of Main Building restrooms
  • Main Office refresh including reconfiguration, new furniture, blinds, finishes, partitions, and technology
  • Meeting Room refresh including new finishes Rabbinic reception conversion with re-furnishing of the reception office area to a “living room”/ante room
  • Security system upgrades, including entry doors and hardening-phased upgrades implementation

Education Building — Reimagining Phase 1 (Completed)

  • Renovation of existing preschool and religious school restrooms
  • New handicap accessible, inclusive restrooms
  • Renovation of teacher lounge and pantry
  • New water service from Spoede Road
  • Repairs and renovation to the pool changing/shower areas, pool deck, and fencing
  • New paving for tricycle playground, walkway, fencing, and renovation of storage shed
  • New carpet and flooring in lower level
  • Upgrades and modernization of Education Building fire protection, alarm, and sprinkler system
  • Security system phased upgrades

What are the current ongoing projects — it seems like we’re always “under construction”?

  • New, improved May Chapel and staff parking lot lighting
  • May Chapel roof replacement

Education Building — Reimagining Phase 2A

  • New drop off canopy, lighting, and sidewalks
  • New handicap and stroller ramp with covered entry staircase
  • New storefront, entry doors, and security
  • New landscaping
  • Improved west building façade—power-washed and repainted

Interested in more information about our current capital campaign to complete the Education Center’s total renovation? Visit our website at: www.ti-stl.org/Reimagining

Are there still needed updates and improvements yet to be funded and addressed?
Although the Education Building will be completely updated as the Reimagining Campaign funds are raised, there are other areas of the building and grounds yet to be impacted. Identified future actions include:

  • Main Building
    • Window and entry door replacement with modern, energy efficient glass, panels, and frames
    • Completion of the energy efficient Main Building HVAC replacement, including the Gall Sanctuary and Isserman Auditorium, kitchen, remaining administration areas, Board Room, hallways, and Edison Bridge
    • Additional phased security upgrades and enhancements
    • New electrical service
    • Kitchen renovation/modernization
    • Rabbinic suite — office renovation and refurnishing
    • Board Room and Conference Room renovation
    • May Chapel interior refresh and pew conversion to individual, flexible seating
    • Kriegshaber Foyer/Gall Sanctuary entry improvements — new covered drop off, security/ weather vestibule, new handicap/ wheelchair/stroller ramp
  • Site (21 Acres)
    • Improved site signage
    • Phased parking lot, walk, and drive replacement and paving
    • Storm water retention and sewer enhancements
    • Landscape enhancements
    • Tree removal and replanting
    • Site lighting completion — site/parking/walkway lighting
    • Site security phased enhancements

Our building and grounds provide a beautiful, flexible place for worship, education, meeting, and social activities and special congregational and life cycle events — and are active seven days a week. Our ongoing planning and stewardship of their maintenance, improvement and efficiency is important to the life of our Temple and congregation. Our building complex has served us well for over 57 years. We have an asset of which we can be proud and deserves our deliberate attention and support.

Each year, the Facilities Committee takes a critical look at future priorities and ways to maintain and enhance our congregational home. We welcome your participation as committee members and through funding the preservation and development of our remarkable building and site!

David Chassin
VP, Facilities


See photos of a few of our renovated areas on page 15 of the September Dateline Bulletin online: www.ti-stl.org/Dateline


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Congregation Temple Israel

#1 Rabbi Alvan D. Rubin Dr.
(Ladue @ Spoede Road)
St. Louis, MO 63141-7670

Office: (314) 432 - 8050
Fax: (314) 432 - 8053
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