Congregation Beth Shalom is excited to announce that it has received a dollar-for-dollar matching grant of $1,000,000 from the State of Pennsylvania's Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program.
Congregation Beth Shalom is a pillar of the Squirrel Hill community and a leading voice of inclusive Conservative Judaism in Western Pennsylvania.
This matching fund opportunity is the first step of a transformative process both to update and enhance the physical structure of this 100-year-old facility and to re-envision the use of this building as a pillar of the Squirrel Hill neighborhood.
The Beth Shalom campus is also home to New Light Congregation, which moved to the Beth Shalom campus after the tragic shooting at Tree of Life; La Escuelita Acoiris, the only Spanish-immersion preschool in greater Pittsburgh; the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle, the Jewish community newspaper with a weekly print circulation of almost 10,000 readers and many more online; and Elegant Edge, the only kosher caterer with event space in Western Pennsylvania.
Beth Shalom is grateful to the elected officials and their staffs for their crucial support of the RACP application: State Representative Dan Frankel, State Senator Jay Costa, County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, and Mayor Ed Gainey.
The state authorized the Congregation Beth Shalom application for funding to repair water damage to the structural envelope of the sanctuary building, to install new roofs, to replace aging HVAC and boiler systems with energy-efficient units that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, to install solar panels on the new sanctuary building roof, and to install energy-efficient lighting throughout the Beth Shalom campus.
Beth Shalom’s President, Alan Kopolow, stated that “this wonderful opportunity will serve as a major step in the revitalization of our building. Many thanks to the State of Pennsylvania, the many elected officials and their staff members who took valuable time to meet with us and to shepherd us through the application process. Thanks also to the Congregation Beth Shalom members and staff who devoted hundreds of hours to this crucial project that lead to the approval of our grant application.”
This matching award, which builds upon ten months of teamwork and a century of leadership, will serve as a catalyst to Congregation Beth Shalom’s impending capital campaign as they begin to engage their congregation and the Pittsburgh community with the goal of preserving the central role of the Beth Shalom campus as a hub for Squirrel Hill life while bringing it more fully into the 21st-century.
More information about this matching grant and others awarded this fall can be found online:
State grants awarded to local Jewish institutions | The Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle (timesofisrael.com)
Frankel: $5.8 million in state grants awarded to local projects (pahouse.com)
Rabbi Andy Shugerman