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Temple or Atid

Temple or Atid

Congregation Or Atid (“Light of the Future”) was founded in 1991 by a small group of families seeking to form a Conservative congregation and afternoon religious school for multiple towns and surrounding communities in Metrowest Boston. For ten years, its members worshipped in a rented space. As membership continued to grow in the 1990s, the congregation’s Long Range Planning Committee commissioned Bruner/Cott to design a custom facility for worship.

Wayland, MA Completed: 2002 16,000 sf

The completed synagogue houses a 250-seat sanctuary, a library/chapel for smaller services, classrooms, support offices, a function room, and a kosher kitchen. The contemporary exterior is clad in Western Red Cedar clapboard, resonating with earlier buildings of similar scale in the neighborhood.

The building is designed to provide proper orientation for religious worship and to connect with its wooded landscape. Its shape suggests a hierarchy of volumes, naturally leading the eye to the sacred space of the sanctuary. A continuous clerestory provides natural light for the entire congregation; seating is in concentric pews. Views to the woods beyond are framed by two mature stands of pine trees and a gently sloping lawn.

The synagogue features an exterior envelope with extremely high thermal performance. The site plan maximizes permeable surfaces; a vegetated wetland helps to manage storm water surges.


  • 2003 Faith & Form, Architecture Award
  • 2006 BSA Honor Award Citation