Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage

  • Client

    • Cleveland Museum of Jewish Heritage
  • Project Type

Design Achievement - The new Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage builds bridges of understanding by sharing Jewish heritage through the lens of the American experience. DLR Group|Westlake Reed Leskosky’s design, emphasizing minimalist simplicity and refined elegance, creates an iconic form with monumental presence symbolically integrated into its landscape. In a unifying gesture, the project excavates the site for the museum and its outdoor garden to correlate to the elevation of the adjacent Temple-Tifereth Israel–a major intervention that creates figural outdoor space flanking the museum. The land around the cut in the earth is shaped as a berm sheathed with the same hand-tooled Jerusalem limestone as the building and reminiscent of a “wall of remembrance.” The procession from the site entry is heightened by the selective revelation of the museum, viewed above the rim of the descending berm. The building’s façade is cut and tooled with several finishes to evoke the texture of ancient city walls. The stone creates an endless play of light and shadow within a modern vocabulary. Inside the museum, space is fluid and open, with column-free space achieved through the use of long-span joists. The building plan, simple and functional, zones programmatic elements into clusters that have access to natural light and exhibit areas that must be protected from light.

Scope Summary - An open lobby welcomes visitors into this new 24,000 SF museum. The lobby serves as a multi-use center hall (available to members for private event rental), clearly guiding visitors to select from multiple exhibit and activity areas. Galleries include: a core 7,000 SF immersive exhibition space illuminating a streetscape of Jewish experience; a flexible, 4,300 SF special exhibition gallery for traveling exhibits with a transition gallery and viewing room; and the 2,300 SF Temple-Tifereth Israel Gallery, which is visible from the exterior and contains the collection of Judaica. The museum also features a 60-seat briefing theater/lecture hall and a retail store. The project employed a number of sustainable elements, including use of high-performance glazing to reduce solar load and increase HVAC efficiency, locally sourced materials, and daylighting. DLR Group|WRL provided architecture, interior design, MEP and structural engineering services.

DLR Group acquired Westlake Reed Leskosky in September 2016. Today, the combined design expertise and resources of Westlake Reed Leskosky and DLR Group serve clients as a global, integrated design firm committed to elevating the human experience through design.

Awards & Recognition

Back to Top
  • Chairman’s Award for Built Work

    American Institute of Architects (AIA) Cleveland
  • Honor Award for Newly Completed Building

    American Institute of Architects (AIA) Ohio
  • Construction and Design Award of Excellence

    Cleveland Engineering Society
  • Award for Craftsmanship

    Builder's Exchange

Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage

Cleveland Museum of Jewish Heritage