A series of eight images — taken from high, from low and from across the street — provide an updated view on the Salt Lake Temple and Church Office Building plaza renovation projects in Salt Lake City.
The photographs and descriptions are the latest in a series of monthly updates posted Friday, July 16, on Newsroom. The temple has been closed for renovations since December 2019 and the plaza since February 2021.
Views from the Conference Center
With the Conference Center having been reopened to the public in June, the building’s roof gardens provide a view from across North Temple Street of the excavation and renovation efforts on and around the Salt Lake Temple.
Additional and deeper excavation is planned for the Salt Lake Temple, which weighs more than 185 million pounds, or 84,000 metric tons.
Views from below
Lagging — or planking — is used to prevent cave-ins and helps contain all the soil pressure from the surrounding areas as the crews begin deeper excavation in preparation to construct three lower levels of the temple.
These levels will include temple maintenance facilities, two baptistries, dressing rooms, sealing rooms and administrative offices.
As the depth of the retaining wall increases, additional walers — or horizontal steel beams — are added to strengthen the structure.
The secant walls and buttresses contain the soil and hold the temple foundation in place in preparation for jack and bore drilling under the existing footings of the temple. This process begins in August to prepare for the new foundation that will encase the existing foundation of the temple and the base isolators designed to resist seismic events.
A view from above
Workers are removing stones from the top of the temple walls and towers in preparation for vertical seismic reinforcement. So far, approximately 1,000 stones have been removed, with another 4,000 more to go.
Along the Church Office Building plaza, crews are removing damaged concrete on the surface of the existing slab, going to a depth of about 1.5 inches (4 centimeters). The removal is in preparation for the placement of high-strength grout to repair the concrete surface.
Also, as reported in June 2021, the North Visitors’ Center has been decommissioned prior to demolition, with all art, exhibits and artifacts in the building having been removed.
The Christus— an 11-foot replica of Bertel Thorvaldsen’s famous statue that has served as a centerpiece display for nearly a half-century — was carefully boxed and removed by a crane on Monday, July 12. It will be placed in storage for preservation and will return to Temple Square at the end of the renovation process.