Temples now planned in 30 nations

When the 21 temples that have been announced or are under construction are completed, the Church will have temples in 30 countries.

With the announcement that a temple would be built in Ghana, made by President Gordon B. Hinckley Feb. 16, the Church now has 72 temples in use, under construction or planned.Of that number, 51 temples are in use in 23 nations. And progress in construction continues in this, the most prolific period of temple building in the history of the world.

Of the 21 temples announced or under construction, seven are in countries that previously did not have a temple. Those temples announced in nations that already have these sacred edifices have been placed to reduce the distances members have to travel to a temple.

The nations that will have a temple for the first time are: Spain, Colombia, Ecuador, Dominican Republic, Bolivia, Venezuela and Ghana. Eight additional temples are planned or are under construction in the United States, three in Brazil, two in Mexico, and one in England.

Construction is moving ahead on 11 of the temples and plans are proceeding on the remaining 10. The temples under construction are:

Billings Montana

The site, at the base of a prominent and picturesque bluff, has been leveled, and streets have been graded. The project has been bid and construction will follow shortly. Groundbreaking for the temple was held March 28. (Coverage will be in the April 4 Church News.) The temple was announced Aug. 31, 1996.

The nearly 34,000 square-foot temple will be located at the west end of Billings on Rimrock Road.

Bogota Colombia

The Bogota Colombia Temple is about half constructed, and will include a basement, main and upper stories. Completion is expected in 1999. Interior walls have been erected and workers have started placing a veneer plaster system on the walls. Most of the basement and main floors have this finish plaster veneer in place, and workers are applying it on the top story. The exterior white-gray granite is being installed, which was imported from Brazil and is being cut in Colombia.

The temple was announced April 7, 1984, and the groundbreaking ceremony was held June 26, 1993.

Boston Massachusetts

Some site work has been done on the Boston Massachusetts Temple. The project has been bid and construction will begin soon. The usual construction period is about two years. The temple was announced Sept. 30, 1995, and ground was broken June 21, 1997.

Cochabamba Bolivia

The foundation for the Cochabamba Bolivia Temple has been completed, and concrete is now being poured for the structure of the temple, as well as for the ancillary buildings that will include patron housing and a home for the temple president. The walls of the temple are beginning to rise to the upper levels and workers are taking advantage of the summer weather to move the project ahead. The local workers are doing high quality work, it is reported. The temple will have an outside facing of Bolivian granite from a local quarry that is about the color of the Salt Lake Temple.

Groundbreaking for the temple was held Nov. 10, 1996. The temple was announced Jan. 21, 1995.

Guayaquil Ecuador

The Guayaquil Ecuador Temple is the longest standing temple project, but work is moving rapidly forward.

The temple is now on the same construction schedule as is the temple in Colombia, and is also 50 percent completed. A large work crew is presently installing a plaster veneer on the inside walls. The temple will be faced on the outside with Brazilian granite. The temple is expected to be completed in 1999.

The temple was announced March 31, 1982, by President Spencer W. Kimball, and ground was broken Aug. 10, 1996.

LDS Colonies temple

The site for the first small temple outside the United States has been cleared and the ground is being prepared for foundation work. The temple, located in Colonia Juarez, Mexico, is about one-third the size of a large stake center.

The temple was announced in the October 1997 general conference, and ground was broken March 7, 1998.

Madrid Spain Temple

Work on the Madrid temple is about two-thirds completed, and marble imported from Italy is being installed on the outside walls. Workmanship is of very high qualityon this temple, say project managers.The inside of the temple will have marble handrails and inlays of marble native of Spain. A highrise building and stake center at the same location are also nearly complete. The seven-story highrise will house a missionary training center, a reception center where people who arrive from long distances can prepare to enter the temple, housing for temple patrons, a garment distribution center, and temple and mission president residences.

And, as the temple is being completed, work is proceeding beneath the adjacent street for a new subway line that will bring patrons right to the temple block.

Ground was broken June 11, 1996, for the temple, which was announced three years earlier.

Monticello Utah

This, the first of the small temples, is well along in construction. The walls have been erected and exterior facing is now being installed. Although the temple is less than 7,000 square feet, it will have the same high standards of construction as larger temples. The temple is 60 percent complete and is expected to be finished by mid-summer.

The temple was announced in October 1997, and ground was broken only six weeks later on Nov. 17, 1997.

Preston England Temple

The Preston England Temple is essentially complete. Contractors are now checking off the remaining items on the "punch list" that need to be fixed. The temple will be open to the public from May 16-30 except Sundays, and be dedicated June 7-10.

Workers described it as "a beautiful project with the highest quality of design and construction."

Frequent heavy rains slowed contractors in such things as landscaping and paving, but work is moving forward on schedule.

The Preston temple was announced in 1992 and construction work started after the 1994 groundbreaking.

Recife Brazil Temple

The site for the Recife temple has been prepared, and construction has started on the foundation. The project is expected to take about two years to complete. Ground was broken on Nov. 15, 1996, about a year after the temple was announced.

Santo Domingo Dominican Republic

The foundation of the Santo Domingo temple is in, concrete floors and walls have been poured, and work is proceeding on the interior systems. The temple, which is about 40 percent complete, will be clad in light-colored granite imported from Brazil. Progress is also moving forward on a patron housing building at the site.

Workers said that digging the temple's foundation through hard coral with jack hammers was a slow and arduous process that initially held back construction.

The Santo Domingo Dominican Republic Temple was started in 1996, three years after being announced.

Other temples nearing construction starts are in Campinas and Porto Alegre, Brazil; Albuquerque, N.M.; and Anchorage, Alaska. Temples that have been announced and are still in preliminary stages are in Accra, Ghana; Monterrey, Mexico; Nashville, Tenn.; White Plains, N.Y.; Venezuela; and Houston, Texas.