On land once occupied by the Andover-Newton Theological Seminary (NW7), the new large (110,000 square feet in phase 1) campus of the eighty-year-old Hebrew College was born in a real estate transaction in 1995. The separateness of the two institutions is currently symbolized by a long retaining wall, with the older school occupying the wooded hillside beyond the Hebrew College parking lot.
As befits Hebrew College (formerly a teacher's training institution, now in transformation to a small university specializing in all areas of Jewish culture and civilization), it is the two-story library that forms the heart of the master plan. Access to the community at large is made visible by the glass walls of the library, with its carrels in full view of the campus. Holdings in rare books, journals, local archives, media, and music videos provide a great resource, locally and beyond.
Facing on the green common and connected to the central entrance, the library is housed in the main building containing the museum, lecture hall, and administrative offices. Across from the library, classrooms and faculty offices are sited to enjoy the natural setting. Skylit courtyards reinforce the theme of light in a physical and metaphorical sense by penetrating the brick and glass buildings. It is hoped that this theme will result in an open dialogue between the two religious institutions.