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Construction for $4.5 M Jewish Cultural Center on New York’s West Side Due to Begin Next Month

Construction is scheduled to begin in January on a $4.5 million Jewish cultural center which will house three institutions near the Lincoln Center on Manhattan’s West Side. The seven-story building, to be completed early in 1978, will be named for Abraham Goodman, an industrialist and Jewish communal leader, who provided $2.5 million for design and construction.

The land was purchased by the Hebrew Arts School for Music and Dance for $1 million in 1966. The school will be one of the three institutions to be housed in the Abraham D. Goodman House. The others are the Tarbuth Foundation for the Advancement of Hebrew Culture and schools operated by the Lincoln Square Synagogue. Goodman, who is treasurer of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, is president of the Tarbuth Foundation. Those institutions are now scattered in borrowed facilities.

The remaining $1 million is being raised by members of the Orthodox synagogue, which was reported half-way toward that goal through a $500,000 contribution from Joseph Gruss, an investment banker, and his wife, Caroline.

STUDIOS, WORKSHOPS AND CLASSROOMS

The section of the Goodman House to be used by the Hebrew Arts School will have 28 music studios, an art workshop, two dance studios, a music library and an electronic music studio. The new facility will provide, for the Tarbuth Foundation, administrative offices, exhibit areas and galleries, and four classrooms.

The synagogues will have 15 classrooms, offices, youth recreation areas and a roof playground. Also to be included in the Goodman House are a 475-seat concert hall, a 150-seat recital hall, an art exhibition section and a Judaica library. Also planned are an outdoor garden and a memorial to the six million victims of the European Holocaust.

Mayor Abraham Beame presented the 86-year-old Jewish leader with the city’s Scroll for Distinguished and Exceptional Service to the city at a crowded City Hall ceremony yesterday. Beame lauded Goodman for his generosity “and lifelong dedication to the highest ideals of the city’s Jewish community.” He added that not until plans were made for the Goodman House “has anyone come forward with plans for a comprehensive center for Jewish culture.”

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