Construction is underway on a new $2-million building that will house Abbotsford’s only Hindu temple.
The project began in mid-October adjacent to the current temple operated by the Fraser Valley Hindu Cultural Society (FVHCS) at 31545 Walmsley Ave.
That facility was built 14 years ago, but Ajay Grover, an FVHCS director who is heading the current construction, said it was always intended to be temporary.
At only about 1,500-sq.ft., the building is woefully inadequate to meet the growing needs of the temple membership.
Grover said FVHCS currently serves about 250 families from Abbotsford, Mission, Chilliwack, Aldergrove and Langley.
Grover said the only other Hindu temple in the Lower Mainland is in Surrey, and the next closest one is in Kamloops.
The new two-storey 13,000-sq.ft. facility is expected to be completed by the end of this year.
The top floor will include office space and a large prayer hall that can accommodate big events. The bottom floor will include a kitchen and eating area.
Grover said the new facility will be able to hold community activities such as weddings and other large celebrations, as well as seniors’ programs, language classes, yoga sessions, music lessons and more.
He said the entire community will be welcome.
Mayor Bruce Banman, who was at the site for a few hours on Tuesday to help with construction, said a strong community provides worship opportunities for all its citizens.
Donations of cash, labour and materials are helping the facility take shape on the land owned by FVHCS.
To date, $500,000 has been raised toward the $2 million cost.
Anyone who would like to contribute to the project in any way is asked to contact Ajay Grover at 604-832-0999, Darshan Sharma at 604-308-5301 or Dharnjit Grover at 604-556-8083.
(Photo below: An artist’s rendering depicts the finished temple.)