Temple Beth Chayim Chadashim, a progressive West Los Angeles Reform congregation had outgrown its small storefront synagogue building which had been their home since 1978. Upon launching a highly successful fund raising campaign, they retained Urban Strategies to manage and oversee the entire process to create their new, larger, modern facility. As a first step, Urban Strategies led the congregation to prepare a detailed functional program statement to define spatial needs, architectural qualities, functionality, and, most importantly, project budget. This program statement was crucial to evaluate potential sites, lead the design process and construct the Temple's new home.

Upon Urban Strategies' due diligence analysis and recommendations, Beth Chayim Chadashim purchased 6090 W. Pico Blvd., a single story, 1920's vintage, unreinforced masonry, commercial building to be transformed, through adaptive reuse, to become their new home. Urban Strategies administered an extensive RFP process and retained Lewis Schoeplein Architects and Howard CDM General Contractor. With the consultant team on board, Urban Strategies oversaw the entitlement process to obtain government approvals, led the congregation and architectural team through the design process and performed value engineering to ensure the final design met the program requirements and budget target.

The Temple's program includes a 150 seat Sanctuary, two multipurpose Classroom spaces, a Lobby for social gatherings that opens to the exterior, an open plan commercial style Kitchen and Offices for staff and clergy. The building is targeting LEED Silver certification and includes roof mounted photo-voltaic panels, recycled cotton insulation and FSC certified wood products. The structural scope required extensive upgrades to bring the 80 year old building to current seismic code and the removal of interior columns in the future sanctuary. The exterior façade was stripped to reveal the original 1920's Art Deco facade.

Urban Strategies provided all construction management services. By including the General Contractor in the design process Urban Strategies used a GMP project delivery method to minimize change orders during construction. Urban Strategies addressed numerous field conditions that arose during demolition which are typical for an adaptive reuse project. However, due to careful planning final construction costs remain within the 10% contingency allowance. Temple Beth Chayim Chadashim's new synagogue is anticipated to open April 2011.

Key Accomplishments:

    Due Diligence:

  • Prepared Program statement to guide the entire acquisition, design and construction process
  • Assisted the Broker and Congregation evaluate alternate properties with regard to program, existing conditions, design considerations, building code and entitlement requirements
  • Oversaw Due Diligence investigation including: survey, existing conditions, entitlements, environmental conditions


  • Oversaw Land Use Consultant and Traffic Engineer to prepare Land Use requests to City Planning
  • Oversaw the Architect to prepare presentation documents for Planning Submittals
  • Assisted congregation to perform community outreach to gain support for Planning Approvals

    Project Management:

  • Established hard and soft cost project budgets with contingencies appropriate for an adaptive reuse project
  • Prepared project schedule for design and construction
  • Administered an RFP process for architectural services and negotiated agreement to retain Lewis Schoeplein Architects
  • Administered an RFP process for General Contractors and negotiated pre-construction and GMP agreement with Howard CDM
  • Oversaw design process by leading Owner/Architect/Contractor meetings and reviewing design progress documents
  • Reviewed comprehensive Outline Specification to aid in construction estimating beginning at the Schematic Design phase

    Construction Management:

  • Led extensive value engineering effort starting at Schematic Design phase to maintain construction budget without sacrificing design intent
  • Oversaw construction process in the field and responded to existing conditions uncovered during demolition
  • Processed all Pay Applications and evaluated Change Order requests
  • Rendered decisions on behalf of the Client
  • Coordinated the installation of Client supplied equipment including: Low Voltage, Millwork, Kitchen Equipment, Landscaping
  • Oversaw Project Closeout
  • Change Orders (not due to Client changes) did not exceed the 10% contingency allowance
  • Construction was completed within 7 1/2 months
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Sunset & St. Andrews,
Los Angeles, CA


Bond Companies

Services Provided:

Due Diligence/Acquisition Support
Project Management
Construction Management


Architect: Lewis Schoeplein Architects
Land Use: Craig Lawson and Associates
Traffic: Hirsch Green Transportation Consulting
MEP: Simon Wong Associates
LEED Commissioning:
American Commissioning
Structural Engineer:
John Labib Associates
Contractor: Howard CDM