New Ashkenazi Synagogue
102 Route Tenant de la Tour, corner Route Vallon // 102 South Xiangyang Road, corner Nanchang Road // 襄阳南路102号近南昌路
Also called the New Ohel Moshe Synagogue 新会堂.
Built in 1937–1941.
The lot for the new Ashkenazi Synagogue, amounting to 1.2 mu, was purchased in 1936. By the end of the year, the Russian architect Emmanuel Gran designed the building (waiving his fees) and published the drawings. The synagogue was described as "extremely modern and simple in style," but "the severe modern lines of the interior will be broken and softened effectively by an imposing altar designed in the ancient Hebrew style." The architect also included "a hidden choir," the first of its kind in a Shanghai synagogue: "The voices of the young choristers will be clearly heard, but they will not be visible to the members of the congregation." The seating for men was on the ground floor, and for women it was on the balcony.
The synagogue was intended for the use of the Russian Jews, numbering over 4,000 people, who contributed funds and construction materials. The cost of the construction was estimated at 175,000 taels. The plan to finish the building by September 1937 was not realized due to the beginning of the Japanese hostilities, but the work on the foundation was "well along the way." The laying of the cornerstone was delayed until 24 November 1940; by that time "the skeletons of three of synagogue's stories have been completed." The Japanese marine commander Captain Inuzuka Koreshige 犬塚惟重, who sympathized with the Jews, ensured the uninterrupted supply of cement for the construction. The chandelier for the new synagogue – 5 feet tall and 4 feet wide – was hand-made by a family of artisans, Isaac (son) and Solomon Miller (father), who were working from their garage in Wayside.
When the building was nearly completed, on 6 April 1941 its opening was celebrated by a mass wedding of twelve couples. The services in the New Synagogue continued after the establishment of the PRC, until 1956, when the interior was irreversibly damaged in a fire. Then the building served as the auditorium of the Shanghai College of Education 上海教育学院 until 1987. It was subsequently reconstructed and enlarged, and now only the footprint and the original buttressed walls remain.
Shanghai Sunday Times, Shanghai Times, China Press, Shanghai Evening Post and Mercury
"Новая синагога и первые русские в Шанхае" https://magazeta.com/arc-synagogue/
James Ross, Escape to Shanghai (1994), pp. 257–258