CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — The University of Illinois is preparing to unveil a replacement menorah structure outside the Chabad Center for Jewish Life after it was vandalized for the fourth time in three years.

The project’s lead architect, Benjamin Bross, told The News-Gazette that the school hopes to have the structure ready for the first night of Hanukkah on Dec. 12.

Concrete for the structure is expected to be poured Tuesday, less than two months after the original structure was vandalized.

The new structure will be 9-feet (3-meters) tall with steel reinforcements. It will feature a menorah on one side and the university’s block “I” logo on the other.

Bross said Rabbi Dovid Tiechtel came up with the structure’s design. He said Teichtel wanted design a structure with a message that people understand.

“It was the rabbi’s vision that he wanted to make sure people understood it wasn’t just about the Jewish life, it wasn’t just about Illinois,” Bross said. “It was about Jewish life at the University of Illinois, and how that Jewish life could be part of a larger community.”

Tiechtel said the menorah will be carved into the sculpture and that the space will be filled with different lights for different occasions.

“This menorah was created with a vision,” Tiechtel said. “The vision is a message of light.”


Information from: The News-Gazette, http://www.news-gazette.com