In 2009 Walters & Cohen was asked by the Borehamwood and Elstree Jewish Centre to produce a feasibility study to explore the potential for modernising and replacing existing facilities. Other than the main prayer hall, or shul, all other buildings were close to the end of their lifespan.
Our feasibility study considered creating a main sukkah with new accommodation around the edges. The sukkah has a moveable roof so that it can be open to the sky when the weather is good and during important Jewish highdays. Surrounding the double height sukkah are two floors of new accommodation which include a welcoming new entrance, kitchen, dining area, café, crèche, library, multi-purpose halls, education rooms, offices, toilets and store rooms. The new sukkah can accommodate a range of activities for all ages, with adequate storage and flexible furniture. Proposed materials are durable, low maintenance and cost effective.
Consultation with the Rabbi and key user groups ensured that specific religious requirements were met in all areas of development. Emphasis was also placed on phasing works to allow the centre to function during the redevelopment, and maintaining ecclesiastical VAT relief, both of which were achieved in our proposals.