National Campus for the Archaeology of Israel

Jerusalem, Israel, 2013

The new National Campus for the Archaeology of Israel is located on a steeply sloping site adjacent to the Israel and Bible Lands Museums. The area overlooks the Hebrew University campus and features views of the city of Jerusalem beyond. The building serves as the headquarters of the Israel Antiquities Authority, and provides operational spaces such as conservation laboratories, archives, a library, offices, vaults and storage, as well as spaces to accommodate a public outreach program. The latter includes indoor galleries and areas on rooftops and in courtyards for the display of recent findings, as well as guided public tours through the laboratories and vaults containing the national treasures, which include 15,000 fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Three courtyards step down the slope and are contained by wings housing the various program elements. One enters at the roof level, which faces the valley and descends into the complex. Two tensile-steel-and-fabric canopies cover the principal courtyard and the mosaic courtyard. The design concept seeks to re-create the character of archaeological excavations with their customary expansive shading tents.

Project Type: Academic

Client: Israel Antiquities Authority

Size: 270000