Revealed: 782 Wythe Avenue, New Viznitz Congregation Synagogue in South Williamsburg

782 Wythe Avenue782 Wythe Avenue, image by Freeform Deform

On the corner of Wythe Avenue and Rutledge Street, in South Williamsburg, a long-stalled development is finally getting underway at 782 Wythe Avenue. Permits were first filed nearly a decade ago in 2006, but applications for a gut-renovation and conversion were approved this past March, and now YIMBY has the first rendering of the project, which will transform an old commercial building into a synagogue for the Viznitz Congregation.

The current structure stands six stories tall and spans 37,264 square feet, and both of those figures will remain unchanged through the transformation. The configuration of floor area will see a major shift, with the first floor to be re-dedicated to a new house of worship. The second floor will have a dining hall and kitchen, and each of the floors above will have classrooms and office space.

While the new job application shows the project will include 15 residential units, these are not apparent on the Schedule A. Freeform Deform is listed as the architect of record, and Brodchandel Shaya of Cong D’Chasidai Viznitz Williamsburg is listed as the owner.

Even though the building will total just shy of 40,000 square feet, the holding capacity will measure 1,336 persons, and the old structure’s transformation will help enliven the surrounding neighborhood with additional pedestrian traffic.

782 Wythe Avenue

782 Wythe Avenue as of September 2014, image from Google Maps

In terms of appearance, the current building will become unrecognizable, and in a good way. Freeform Deform explains the changes on their website as follows:

The client had very specific requests regarding the architecture and materials. For instance, the crenelated parapet detail and the inclusion of “Jerusalem Stone” were requirements that pertained specifically to the sect’s original Synagogue which is located in Israel. The project is an exercise in classical proportion and creating uniquely religious architecture within highly regimented design parameters.

While permits have been filed, a complicated renovation process may delay completion — but nevertheless, it appears construction is finally about to begin.

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