アジャイ・アソシエイツ（Adjaye Associates）が設計した〈アブラハムファミリーハウス（Abrahamic Family House）〉は、アラブ首長国連邦（UAE）の首都アブダビのサディヤット文化地区に位置する、学習、対話、信仰実践のための新しい拠点である。
アジャイ・アソシエイツの創設者サー・デイヴィッド・アジャイOM OBE（Sir David Adjaye OM OBE）は次のように語る。
イスラム教最大の聖地メッカの方角を向く〈イマーム・アルタイブ・モスク（Imam Al-Tayeb Mosque）〉は、イスラム教における「7」という数字の重要性を反映し、ファサードは7つの細長いアーチで構成されている。
〈聖フランシスコ教会（His Holiness Francis Church）〉は、太陽が昇る方角である東を向いており、ファサードは、垂直に射す光線を象徴する「林立する柱」で構成されている。柱を東西に配することにより、朝は聖域に日光が降り注ぎ、昼は暑い日差しを遮る。
エルサレムの方角を向く〈モーゼス・ベン・マイモン・シナゴーグ（Moses Ben Maimon Synagogue）〉のV字型の柱による3層構造は、スッカ（ユダヤ教の最も大切な祝日の1つ「スッコト」で使われるテントのような小屋）におけるヤシの葉の重なりを表している。
Abrahamic Family House
Location: Jacques Chirac Street, Saadiyat Cultural District, Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Design Architect: Adjaye Associates
The Abrahamic Family House is a new centre for learning, dialogue and the practice of faith located in the Saadiyat Cultural District in Abu Dhabi, capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Encompassing three separate houses of worship – a mosque, a church, and a synagogue – as well as shared spaces for gathering and dialogue, At the Abrahamic Family House visitors are invited to participate in religious services, guided tours, celebrations, and opportunities to explore faith. Each of the dedicated houses of worship, the Eminence Ahmed El-Tayeb Mosque, His Holiness Francis Church, and Moses Ben Maimon Synagogue, has space for observers, and daily guided tours will show visitors features of the design pertinent to the practices and traditions of each faith.
The Abrahamic Family House was officially inaugurated and opened to worshippers on 16th February. Access to the forum and guided tours will be available to visitors from 1 March 2023.
Statement from Sir David Adjaye OM OBE
“I believe architecture should work to enshrine the kind of world we want to live in, a world of acceptance, openness, and constant advancement. As an architect, I want to create a building that starts to rise above the notion of hierarchical difference and enhances the richness of human life. Our hope is that through these buildings that celebrate three distinct religions, people of all faiths and from across society can learn and engage in a mission of peaceful coexistence for generations to come.”
・Start of Design Services: 5 August 2019
・Public Project Announcement: September 2019 Groundbreaking: December 2020
・Inauguration: 16 February 2023
・Public Opening: 1 March 2023
Adjaye Associates, Design Architect, Landscape Architect, Interior Designer
Zublin Construction, General Contractor
Maynard, Signage / Wayfinding Consultant
Arcadis, Client Project Manager
Facts & Figures
・Project Size: 6,500 sqm / 70,000 sqft GFA.
・Houses of Worship: Each of the houses is a cubic shape measuring 30 meters (98 feet) x 30 meters x 30 meters. The courtyards in each house measure: Mosque: 1,322 sqm / 1,443 sqft; Church: 1,170 sqm / 12, 593 sqft; Synagogue: 1,110 sqm / 1, 184 sqft
・Capacity for Worshippers: Mosque: 322 prayer spots; Church: capacity for 300 seated; Synagogue: capacity for 200 seated
・Plinth Measurements: 180 meters (591 feet) in length and 112 meters (367 feet) in width. It offers 21,000 sqm (226,000 sqft) of space and is located 6 meters (20 feet) above ground level.
・Circulation: 3 elevators (one in the courtyard of each house of worship), 4 stairways, and 2 ramps
・Delivery Method: Design-Build
・LTI-Free Man Hours: Over 4,376,700
・The Abrahamic Family House consists of a one-story plinth with a welcoming Forum at its center and three houses of worship nestled within.
・The three cubic houses of worship are equal in volume and display a clear visual harmony. At the same time, each building’s architectural articulation is unique, and specifically oriented to its siting and religious references.
・Each house of worship includes a courtyard with a water feature and ancillary spaces specific to its specific religious traditions and practices. The houses are linked by an elevated garden – a shared space for gathering and connection.
・Sunlight is the complex’s principal design material, impacting each house at different times of the day.
Imam Al-Tayeb Mosque
・Site & Orientation: The mosque is oriented towards Makkah.
・Façade: Seven elongated arches on each side of the building reflect the importance of the number seven in Islam. The walls feature more than 470 operable panels of delicate latticework, creating the mashrabiya – one of the most admired features of Islamic architecture – on a grand scale. The mashrabiya allows for the circulation of air, while regulating light and maintaining privacy.
・Interior: A four-column interior grid creates nine ascending vaults, which orient visitors toward the mihrab. The four columns reference the Islamic notion of stability, order, and fullness that is attributed to the number four
・Ancillary Spaces: The mosque has two external ablutions—one for male and female worshippers. The male ablution is in the shape of an inverted pyramid and the female ablution has the shape of an inverted sphere. These shapes are constructed in concrete to give a sense of weight and wonder whilst one prepares for worship
His Holiness Francis Church
・Site & Orientation: The church is oriented towards the east facing the direction of the rising sun, as light is considered symbolic of divinity.
・Façade: A forest of towering columns symbolise vertical rays of light. The columns are oriented east–west to allow daylight to flood the sanctuary in the morning and block the hot sun mid-day.
・Interior: The design of the church is predicated on the idea of a “shower of ecstatic redemption.” Rendered in a series of linear timber battens, the “shower” ascends at its center and descends along the periphery. More than 13,000 linear meters (42,650 linear feet) of timber form the church’s vaulting. Pews constructed of oak were designed by Adjaye Associates and reference the church’s vertical façade design. The crucifix is purposely minimal in design, reflecting that the church is open to all and meant to be used by multiple denominations.
・Ancillary Spaces: The baptistry is octagonal like ancient baptistries, in a conical form with small openings. As the sun moves throughout the day, light pierces the cone to create additional shards of light in the space.
Moses Ben Maimon Synagogue
・Site & Orientation: The synagogue is oriented towards Jerusalem.
・Façade: Three layers of V-shaped columns reference overlapping layers of palm fronds on the sukkah—a traditional shelter for prayer used during Sukkot, the Jewish festival of shelter. The columns on each side of the building have seven points that touch the ground and eight points that touch the soffit—with seven being a representative symbol of man, and eight representing God above.
・Interior: A suspended bronze mesh tent descends from the ceiling’s central skylight and drapes above the congregation, symbolising both the tent-like structure of the sukkah and the original tabernacle, which extensively used bronze, and oriented visitors toward the Torah. Daylight refracting through the colonnade and suspended bronze mesh create the effect of dappled, filtered light inside the synagogue and reference sunlight streaming through the palm fronds of the sukkah. The skylight allows stars to be seen at night and references the chuppah, a temporary structure used during Jewish marriages. The layout is designed to be as flexible as possible, allowing the seating to be changed for both Sephardic and Ashkenazi congregations.
・Ancillary Spaces: The mikveh is a perfect square wherein one orients their way around a centralised square pool, taking each step on the mikveh journey until reaching the pool. Its construction required adherence to religious rules regarding the creation of a mikveh while using modern construction methods.
Forum & Garden
・Plinth: The single-story plinth references the mound as a sacred archetype that moves us closer to higher things.
・This common, shared space encourages dialogue between members of the three Abrahamic faiths.
Forum: At the center of the plinth sits the Forum, a shared secular space for gatherings and educational programming, including a library and exhibitions.
・Garden: The garden, located atop the plinth, connects the three houses of worship and serves as an outdoor multipurpose space for events, festivals, and community programs.
・Circulation: Elevators, stairs, and ramps offer accessible navigation between the Forum, the elevated garden, and each individual house of worship.
・Materials used include concrete, Omani limestone, textured plaster, bronze detailing, and timber battens.
・Most materials were locally sourced and selected for sustainability, durability, and longevity.
・26,000 square meters (280,000 square feet) of limestone were used in the construction.
・Seating within the church and synagogue were constructed in naturally hard-wearing oak for the material’s durable properties as well as its religious symbolism.
・Estidama 2 Pearl Rating is anticipated.
・Passive cooling strategies used include high thermal massing, orientation according to solar path movements, and integration of native landscaping and water features.
・The colonnades and mashrabiya were designed according to thermal modeling studies to balance solar shading, illumination, and heat gain.
・Courtyards draw light into interior spaced and provide airflow.
・Water features located in courtyards are designed to keep the courtyards cool. The buildings’ colonnades were designed to funnel air into the courtyards, which in turn is cooled by the water features and evaporative cooling, creating a temperature difference of up to 5 degrees Celsius (41 degrees Fahrenheit) from the plinth.
・Trees and vegetation are local or regional, chosen for their ability to provide shade and survive in the hot climate with low water demand for irrigation.
・All fixtures are low energy (lights etc.).
・All lighting is set to vary on a timer during the evening to avoid light pollution.
Landscaping & Vegetation
・The Abrahamic Family House features a total of 430 trees and other desert vegetation that are locally sourced, native to the region, provide shade, and have collectively low irrigation demand to mitigate water consumption as much as possible.
・Each house of worship is represented by a different type of citrus tree in its courtyard. Within the elevated garden, each house of worship is also represented by a symbolic ghaf tree—the national tree of the UAE. Date palm trees are also used to symbolise entrances—both externally from the street to the Abrahamic Family House, and from the Forum into the courtyard of each house of worship.
・The garden features acacia trees, which are commonly found across the UAE, shade large areas and have high drought tolerance. Within the Forum, an olive tree that is over one hundred years old is framed within a prominent courtyard, symbolising peace.
The Abrahamic Family House is a collection of three religious spaces: a mosque, a church, and a synagogue—all of which will sit upon a fourth secular space consisting of a Forum and raised garden. The house will serve as a community for interfaith dialogue and exchange, nurturing the values of peaceful co-existence and acceptance among different beliefs, nationalities, and cultures. Within each of the houses of worship, visitors can observe religious services, listen to holy scripture, and experience sacred rituals.
The form is translated from the three faiths, carefully using the lens to define what is similar, as opposed to what is different. Through the power of these revelations, the design emerges as powerful plutonic forms with a clear geometry: three cubes sitting on a plinth. The narrative of each religion unfolds through various scales—from structure to detail—and emerges through the elements of creation—water and light. Each chamber sits within a courtyard with triangular water features designed to cool the body. Upon entering each house of worship, light bathes visitors while hot air is pulled from the perimeter towards the adorned ceilings, tempering the interior. Wrapped in an off-white concrete that deflects the heat of the sun and references the sand and mountains of the Emirati, each form is oriented towards religious references whilst sitting within a unifying garden.
The Imam Al-Tayeb Mosque is oriented towards Mecca. Light filters through the delicate GRP latticework of the mashrabiya screens, which circulate air while maintaining privacy. Four seamless, monolithic columns represent the Islamic notions of stability, order, and fullness and create a vaulting space that orients the visitors towards the mihrab. The only fully opaque wall billows to make room for the simplistic stone mihrab, which is bathed in the patterned light from the screens.
Along two corners of the courtyard are spaces for ablution, screened by bronze gates that formally echo the seven arches that break up each façade of the exterior form. Mediating between the elements and privacy, an inverted dome and pyramid ceiling within a square form signifies the female and male ablution.
The His Holiness Francis Church is oriented towards the rising sun in the East, along with a forest of columns that composes the form to allow light to enter from the exterior. From the courtyard, two uneven columns suspend above the entrance symbolizing the testing of faith. A warm wooden portal guides you into the congregation space where Adjaye Associates designed oak pews face towards the altar. Inspired by the altar of St Peter’s Basilica, a canopy of linear timber elements cascades down from the ceiling in a “shower of ecstatic redemption.” Marble altar, ambo, and tabernacle, as well as an oak credence table and three chairs sit on the sanctuary below the crucifix—a humanoid form with no indication of race or creed.
A baptistry is located beside the church, denoted by a conical form that emerges above the courtyard walls with scattered small windows of light emitting for the interior. Inside, an octagonal room houses a baptismal font, which emerges from the ground in a rough-cut marble form.
The Moses Ben Maimon Synagogue is oriented towards Jerusalem. A series of three V-shaped columns amass to create a screen between the interior and exterior, referencing the overlapping layers of palm fronds on the sukkah—a structure used during Sukkot, the Jewish festival of shelter. A bronze mesh tent—symbolizing the original tabernacle— cascades from a skylight in the ceiling and drapes over the congregation. A stone wall envelopes the base, from which the ark emerges and, along with Adjaye Associates designed oak seating featuring the V-shaped motif, face towards the bimah.
The mikveh is located adjacent to the entrance and composed of limestone walls. A skylight punctures through a textured, monolithic ceiling, allowing light from above to enter the intimate space of the mikveh.
The fourth space—not affiliated with any specific religion—will serve as a Forum for all people to come together with the collective ambition to convene spatially, through courtyards, a central entrance, a library, and exhibition space, and interpersonally, through community educational and event-based programming. With access to each chamber’s courtyard, it is a place of convergence, rather than divergence. A destination in itself, the raised garden creates a viewing platform to take in all three religious structures, promoting a sense of harmony and interconnectivity whilst asserting their individualism. Framed by date palms to symbolize entrances and punctuated by planters with regional vegetation and water features for cooling, the garden becomes a climate moderated space of collective respite. Profound or mundane moments are cultivated throughout, encouraging the celebration of collective history and collective identity at all scales.
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