Photo Credit: Courtesy of Herzog & de Meuron Mann-Shinar Architects, Executive Architect
The Stewart and Lynda Resnick Entrance Hall.

With the new National Library of Israel campus set to open in 2022, it will feature the Stewart and Lynda Resnick Entrance Plaza and Entrance Hall.

Stewart and Lynda Resnick / YouTube screenshot

The Entrance Plaza, across from the Knesset, will be the gateway to the new National Library of Israel building, designed by the Swiss architecture firm founded by Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron.

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According to the architects, “Kaplan Street is elevated, necessitating a raised entry vitrine (glass display) that cuts into the stone and provides direct access to the open space at the center of the library. The two vitrine legs closest to Kaplan Street are expressed as independent objects that frame the entry at street level and welcome visitors to the National Library. They are carved to accommodate a seating area and an entry vestibule… A gently curved metal canopy extends from these elements to the entry door beyond. Adjacent to the paved entry walkway, rooftop gardens link the entry experience to the landscape surrounding the building.”

Good to know.

The 7,000 sq. ft. entrance hall will serve as the principal access point to the new National Library of Israel building, linking all core areas of the Library, including the reading halls, exhibition galleries, visitor and education centers, auditorium, restaurant, and main information desk. Entering the building from the Stewart and Lynda Resnick Entrance Plaza, visitors will find themselves in the spacious Entrance Hall, spanning the entire 130 ft. width of the building and overlooking the dramatic “Sea of Books” via a 15 ft. tall, 60 ft. long floor-to-ceiling glass wall.

The Stewart and Lynda Resnick Entrance Plaza. / Courtesy of Herzog & de Meuron Mann-Shinar Architects, Executive Architect

The California-based couple Stewart and Lynda Resnick own The Wonderful Company, which grows, harvests, bottles, packages, and markets fruits, nuts, flowers, water, wines, and juices, with 9,000 employees and revenues exceeding $4 billion. They have been partners in life and business since 1986 when they purchased the Franklin Mint. They are both dedicated philanthropists, promoting the Jewish values of Tzedakah and Chessed.

Artist’s rendering of the new National Library of Israel campus adjacent to the Knesset. / Courtesy of Herzog & de Meuron Mann-Shinar Architects, Executive Architect

According to Mother Jones, The Wonderful Company has been criticized for its aggressive consumption of water in the drought-ridden state of California, expanding its business while California residents are facing water shortages and the state’s water ecosystem has been irreversibly damaged. Since 2010, The Wonderful Company has made significant improvements to the communities of Central Valley, especially in the city of Lost Hills, where half of every household has at least one family member working for The Wonderful Company. Over the years, the Resnicks and The Wonderful Company have given more than $100 million to build two charter schools, and $20 million to create an agriculture-career college prep program for seven public high schools in California’s Central Valley.

Speaking of giving, The National Library of Israel on Wednesday announced the establishment of the Lynda and Stewart Resnick Fellowship, which will bring prominent international scholars and artists to Jerusalem, the vibrant hub of creativity and learning. International scholars and artists who have made a significant mark in their given fields of endeavor will participate in the five-month-long fellowship, which will include remote and in-person elements.

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David writes news at JewishPress.com.