Preserving Historical Assets
A 2017 historical preservation grant of $11,600 from the Lloyd Klos Historical Fund at the Community Foundation was used to help preserve a historically important building on a main thoroughfare in northeast Rochester. The grant was specifically designated for weatherization, shoring up the roof, and repairing windows.
B’nai Israel Ahavas Achim, located at 692 Joseph Avenue in Rochester, was built in 1926 and served as a synagogue to neighborhood residents and beyond for decades. But it sat unused and in disrepair for many years. The Joseph Avenue Arts and Culture Alliance, with input from the Community Design Center of Rochester and the Joseph Avenue Business Association, developed a plan for this unique building.
That plan included restoring the synagogue and turning it into a modern, 300-seat center for performing and visual arts, along with space for educational programs. The Alliance took official ownership of the property in summer 2016.
The building is on the National Register of Historical Places and received landmark designation from the city. Its early 20th Century Romanesque Revival design is the most intact example of such architecture left in Rochester.