Tri-Valley congregation buys site in Pleasanton for new synagogue

Congregation Beth Emek has been in the Tri-Valley since 1956. Membership has more than doubled in the past five years, according to Rabbi Richard Winer. It has swelled to more than 150 households, outgrowing its facility on College Avenue in Livermore.

Two years ago, the congregation's board of directors appointed a committee to investigate new sites in the Dublin-Livermore-Pleasanton area, where more than 90 percent of the members live. The committee also conducted a fund-raising campaign and hired San Francisco architect John Goldman. The contract signing was the culmination of the site search process.

More than half the congregation's members have been involved in the project, according to Karen Holtz, Beth Emek's president. "When it came time to vote, the decision was unanimous," she said. "This particular piece of property meets our goal of being centrally located in the Tri-Valley."

Beth Emek expects to break ground before the end of the year and move into the new facility by fall 2001.