NYU Global Center for Academic and Spiritual Life


The Center for Academic and Spiritual Life at New York University brings together students and scholars from a wide variety of religious backgrounds into one multi-faith and multi-function building on the NYU campus. This ambitious project, which is currently under construction, will provide sacred spaces for Muslim, Christian and Jewish faiths within a single facility. Because it houses three different faiths, no particular religious iconography is expressed in the design. Instead, the 'Tree of Life,' which is shared by all three faiths, inspires the facade. A system of water jet cut, aluminum reinforced limestone panels grows upward from a heavier base near the building entrance to a lighter and more delicate screen as the building reaches the sky. The tree of life is an especially poignant image within the hyper-urbanity of the Manhattan site. The inclusive and inviting building serves the entire campus community with classrooms, offices, and music practice facilities. The building is designed to bring together students and faculty from around the world to engage in multi-faith discussions and incorporates state of the art multimedia systems to provide the infrastructure for this dialog. The project is located in a highly visible location on the south side of Washington Square Park in New York City. When approaching from the north, the site is directly on axis with 5th Avenue and is framed by the view through the Washington Memorial Arch. The project represents New York University`s design excellence initiative and will seek a gold LEED rating.

Constructed, 2012