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Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Changes made to Temple Construction Progress Report

Hello, all! While I don't know how closely any of you are following the temple construction progress reports I post regularly, I wanted to note that I have rethought some of the changes I have recently made to that report and restored the wording of some statuses while also eliminating some of the recently added notes that seemed more speculative. Here is the changed version of that report. Comments continue to be welcome and appreciated. Thanks for the privilege of your time. I wish each and every one of you all the best.

Temple Construction Progress Update (current as of 8/2/17)

NOTE: There will be a total of 182 operating temples once all of those under construction or announced are dedicated. Of those, we currently have 156 temples in operation; 1 other will be dedicated next month (after the traditional July recess for the General Authorities); 2 more have construction concluding and a dedication scheduled for later this year; 9 are in various stages of construction; 1 other has construction pending (groundbreaking was last year), and earnest work will hopefully start on that within the next month or so); 1 has a groundbreaking scheduled (set for later this year); 2 are undergoing renovation (with completion anticipated next year); another 4 have a renovation closure date set for later this year, with 5 others set to close early next year (the actual dates will be set closer to the time); the remaining 12 are announced (with either a site announcement or groundbreaking pending).

NOTE ON FUTURE TEMPLES: Elder Larry Y. Wilson, who serves as the Executive Director of the Temple Department, indicated in a recent interview that the Church has around 80 temple sites that are under active consideration for an announcement within the next 15 years or so. If that is true, then that would take the number of temples in any phase to just over 260 by 2032. And if that is true, then whether or not the Church makes it an official goal to do so, it is more than likely that there could be a minimum of 200 temples dedicated by or before the Church’s 200th anniversary on April 6, 2030. All it would take to do so is 18 more being announced, and each of them, along with the 26 either under construction or announced, to be completed within the next 12 years and 9 months, which is doable if 3 or 4 are dedicated per year between now and then. As there are 3 others scheduled for dedication before the end of this year, with 5 set for next year, and up to 5 the year following, the Church seems to be on track for that. This is especially possible in light of the fact that, within the last 2.5 years or so, 12 new temples have been announced, which works out to roughly 5 temples announced each year. If that average continues for the next 15 years, 75 new temples will be announced in that time, which is very close to the 80 referenced by Elder Wilson. Subsequent versions of this report will continue to share developments as they occur.

Preparing for dedication:
157. Tucson Arizona Temple: Preparing for dedication, which is scheduled for Sunday August 13, 2017.

Construction nearing completion; dedication scheduled:
158. Meridian Idaho Temple: Interior finish work underway; sod laid and trees planted; dedication scheduled for Sunday November 19, 2017.
159. Cedar City Utah Temple: Installing art glass; laying sod; dedication scheduled for Sunday December 10, 2017.
NOTE: While landscaping has progressed on this temple as reported previously, that has not been noted in any of the sources available to me. For that reason, I have felt it wise to revert to this wording.
                                                      
Under Construction (completion anticipated within the next 1-2 years):
160. Rome Italy Temple: Interior and exterior work progressing; construction office trailers donated to community organizations; office space relocated to patron housing; completion anticipated sometime during mid-2018.
161. Kinshasa Democratic Republic of the Congo Temple: Exterior walls completed; preparing to attach plywood to roof trusses and to pour baptismal font support; completion anticipated sometime during mid-to-late 2018.
162.  Barranquilla Colombia Temple: Stone cladding underway on the south wall; completion anticipated sometime during late 2018.
163. Durban South Africa Temple: Applying waterproofing membrane to temple exterior walls; installing basement stairs; laying brick at missionary housing; top of elevator shaft poured.
NOTE: While a previous version of this report had noted an update, no available source reflects that new information. Until more is known, I have felt it wiser to restore this wording.
164. Concepcion Chile Temple: Cladding nearly complete on north and south walls and progressing around the steeple base; completion anticipated sometime during late 2018-early 2019.
NOTE: While these minor wording changes for this temple’s status are not featured on the status page of the LDS Church Temples site, I have changed it because it flows better, in my opinion. I will be sure to pass along any actual status changes on this temple once I become aware of them. In the meantime, it is my belief that this temple will be dedicated closer to the end of 2018 than the beginning of 2019. If that changes for any reason, I will pass that along.

Under construction, completion anticipated within the next 2-3 years:  
165. Fortaleza Brazil Temple: Tower base walls poured; scaffolding removed; completion anticipated sometime during early-to-mid 2019.
166. Rio de Janeiro Brazil Temple: Preparing to pour footings for foundation; surrounding property being cleared and graded; completion anticipated sometime during mid-2019.
NOTE: In the midst of other changes that have been needed for this report, I also took another look at the question of whether this temple or the Winnipeg Manitoba Temple might be finished first. In doing so, I discovered that until formal construction begins in Winnipeg and that process verifies that Winnipeg will be finished first, it would be wiser to reverse them again. I also know that this temple may not seem as far along as the two below it (Lisbon and Arequipa), but it is the only project planned for the temple complex, which, combined with the completion estimate, does not seem to warrant changing the order in which the three are listed. If that changes, I will pass that information along.
167.  Lisbon Portugal Temple: Pouring temple foundation walls; preparing meetinghouse for exterior cladding; completion anticipated sometime during late 2019.
NOTE: Until construction is officially underway on the Winnipeg Manitoba temple, I have felt it wise to renumber this temple. As soon as that happens and once more is known about its progress, I will reorder this temple again.
168. Arequipa Peru Temple: Setting rebar for main floor structural walls; completion anticipated sometime during late 2019-early 2020.
NOTE: As with the Lisbon temple, I have reordered this temple until construction is officially underway on the Winnipeg temple. Based on how quickly that temple might progress, I will make any future adjustments that are needed.

Construction pending (anticipated to start anytime):
169. Winnipeg Manitoba Temple: Groundbreaking held Saturday December 3, 2016; awaiting full-scale operations; acquiring building permits; completion anticipated sometime during mid-2019.
NOTE: Until construction officially commences on this temple, it has felt like a good idea to change its number. Once work is actually underway, I will change the number to match its estimated completion (which right now may be before or after Rio). For my part, I am convinced that this temple will not be dedicated until after the dedication of the Rio temple, but time will tell. I am keeping an eye out for developments and will pass those along as I find out about them. Until that time, this number will not be changed. And if it happens that construction does not start on this temple prior to the groundbreaking of the Port-au-Prince Haiti Temple, this temple’s number will change again. I hope to be able to report very soon that construction has begun on this temple.

Groundbreaking scheduled:
170. Port-au-Prince Haiti Temple: Ground being cleared; preparing for groundbreaking ceremony, which is scheduled for Saturday October 28, 2017; completion anticipated sometime during mid-to-late 2020.
NOTE: In addition to knowing that this temple will be much smaller than its other Caribbean counterpart, I found out in late July that this temple will be comparable in size (and perhaps design) to the one in Kinshasa. All of this points to the notion that this temple’s dedication could easily happen during the specified time-frame estimated above. Once work is actually underway (which is anticipated to happen on Monday October 30, barring any delays), I will pass along any changes to that thinking.

Undergoing Renovation (rededication anticipated within the next year or so):
20. Jordan River Utah Temple: Closed for renovation; rededication anticipated sometime during mid-2018.
NOTE: Though this temple’s renovation has been ongoing since its closure in February 2016, and while the rededication had been anticipated at some point during 2017, as the renovation process has continued, those estimates have been altered again and again, until this most recent revision of that time-frame. This event could happen at any point in the middle of the year, or it could be pushed back again. More information will come as more is known. For now, until proven otherwise, I am convinced that this temples’ rededication will be among the first temple-related events of 2018, followed in fairly short order by the dedication of the Rome Italy Temple, then the rededication of the Frankfurt Germany Temple.
41. Frankfurt Germany Temple: Closed for renovation; baptismal font support walls poured in basement addition; rededication anticipated sometime during mid-2018.
NOTE: This temple, closed since September of 2015, was also anticipated to be completed and rededicated at some point prior to the end of 2017. As with the Jordan River temple, that completion estimate has been pushed back repeatedly. Until more is known, it is anyone’s guess when this rededication might happen. I will pass along any updates as I receive them. For now, as noted above, I think we are safe in assuming that the rededication of this temple will follow both the rededication of the Jordan River Utah Temple and the dedication of the Rome Italy Temple.

Renovations Scheduled (official closure dates announced):
80. Memphis Tennessee Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation on September 29, 2017; rededication may take place sometime during early-to-mid 2019.
NOTE: While this temple is a comparatively smaller one (from the Hinckley era), I also learned on July 5 that this renovation will be altering both the exterior and interior appearance of the temple. Those plans may or may not involve an expansion. The opinions on what will happen in that regard are so different that it will take time to settle the question. Once more is known, I will pass that along. In the meantime, my study on the subject is ongoing.
18. Tokyo Japan Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation on September 29, 2017; rededication may take place sometime during early-to-mid 2020.
NOTE: This temple, constructed as part of President Kimball’s smaller temple design, is anticipated to be rededicated sometime in 2020. If the news release about this renovation is any indication, no expansion is in the works. Adjustments will be made as the process gets underway. For now, I wanted to also note that the stated purpose for this renovation is primarily to upgrade electrical and mechanical systems and bring the temple up-to-code. With that in mind, I also learned in early July that the completion of this temple will most likely be sooner than I originally thought, as it is comparatively smaller.
95. Oklahoma City Oklahoma Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation on October 14, 2017; rededication may take place sometime during early-to-mid 2019.
NOTE: In an earlier version of this report, I had indicated that an expansion of this temple didn’t seem likely, as information available to me at that time pointed to the current temple taking up the entire area of the lot. On July 18, I learned I might be getting this temple and Memphis confused. I am trying to iron all of that out, and will pass along whatever I find out. Until more is known, I will not be altering my completion estimate. If an expansion is planned, that will change the estimate.
112. Asuncion Paraguay Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation on October 29, 2017; rededication may take place sometime during early-to-mid 2019.
NOTE: As noted in previous versions of this report, I had the closure date for this temple off by a month. I regret that misinformation. In the meantime, I did some study on whether or not this temple might be expanded. On July 16, I found that this temple may have room to expand. Whether or not expansion will happen, until more is known, I have felt it wiser to stick to my completion estimate.

Temples that have a renovation closure announced, but no official date made known yet:
68. Raleigh North Carolina Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation in January 2018; rededication may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2019.
NOTE: On July 16, while studying scheduled renovations, I learned two things: this temple is on a large enough plot of land that expansion may be possible and even feasible. That said, the Saints in North Carolina (according to one of my contacts) were told that an expansion is not in the renovation plans for this temple. It is possible but perhaps unlikely. More to come once more is known, including any change of the completion estimate.
94. Baton Rouge Louisiana Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation in February 2018; rededication may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2019.
NOTE: My study on this temple (which I conducted on July 16) indicates that there may be room on this temple lot to expand the edifice. The question is whether or not the Church will choose to do so. I will keep an eye on developments and pass things along as I learn of them. For now, the question cannot be settled.
13. Oakland California Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation in February 2018; rededication may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2019.
NOTE: This renovation and the one below were announced in February of 2017. In the interim, the Church has scheduled 7 other renovations around those two. This temple is older, so the renovation will likely take longer. But I am not ruling out other possibilities. We also know that the primary purpose of this renovation is to upgrade mechanical and electrical systems and bring them up to code. So I don’t think expansion is in the plans for this temple.
16. Washington D. C. Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation in March 2018; rededication may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2020.
NOTE: This is another older temple where the purpose of the renovation is to upgrade electrical and mechanical systems and bring them up to code. An expansion doesn’t seem likely. It is a larger temple, so the renovation will likely take longer. That reinforces the idea that the completion timeframe above will be spot on.
7. Mesa Arizona Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation in May 2018; rededication may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2020.
NOTE: The purpose of this renovation is to upgrade electrical and mechanical systems and bring them up to code. This temple has been renovated before, which reinforces the idea that there may be less to update here than for Washington DC. Until more is known, it is my feeling that this temple will likely be rededicated first.

NOTE ON FUTURE GROUNDBREAKINGS: During the month of July, I revised the order in which temples in this section were listed. About a week after doing so, I found out that I needed to revise and rethink that order again. The current order reflects the latest information I have (as of the late night hours of July 18). I should also note that the timing of any temple event is up to the Lord (based on conditions in each area), so these estimates should not in any way be taken as gospel or official until they are confirmed or denied by those who have the authorization to do so.

Announced:
171. Lima Peru Los Olivos Temple: Planning and preliminary construction phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking could take place sometime during early-to-mid 2018.
NOTE: With the recent news that preconstruction for this temple began in March 2017, it is not hard to believe that a groundbreaking could take place in short order once 2018 starts. But as we also know that the Port-au-Prince Haiti Temple had its groundbreaking unexpected announced in mid-July (being set for the end of October), that opens up the possibility that this temple could be another that could either have its groundbreaking just before that for Port-au-Prince (as there is a precedent for such things) or within the remaining two months of 2017. If that doesn’t happen, then this temple will likely be the first to have a groundbreaking during 2018.
172. Harare Zimbabwe Temple: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking could take place during early-to-mid 2018.
NOTE: Though nothing has happened with this temple since Elder Hamilton stated that a site announcement and groundbreaking would take place in short order at some point prior to the end of 2017, and though that seemed to provide a sufficient reason to downgrade this temple to sometime in 2018 or 2019, in reevaluating things in mid-July, I determined that it would be wiser to move this temple back to this spot. There is an outside chance that this temple could have a groundbreaking at some point during the 4 months or so left in 2017, but that doesn’t seem probable. Anything is possible, though. I will keep an eye out for developments and pass those along as I find out more, along with any other adjustments.
173. Urdaneta Philippines Temple: Planning and approval phase; awaiting government approval and official site announcement; groundbreaking could take place sometime during mid-2018.
NOTE: While previous versions of this report had downgraded this temple to being among the last of the current bunch to have a groundbreaking, the end of delays preventing progress on this temple’s construction mean that a site announcement and groundbreaking may be simply a matter of time. That being the case, as noted in so many previous versions of this report, some have speculated a groundbreaking for this temple may take place prior to the end of 2017. But it seems more likely that it may wait until around this time. As always, with these being no more than my own thoughts based on the facts I have right now, they are subject to change as things develop. I will make any further changes that might be needed as that becomes necessary.
174. Saratoga Springs Utah: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking may take place sometime during mid-2018.
NOTE: On July 18, 2017, I learned some things that convinced me to take another look at the order in which these announced temples are listed. That more extensive research led me to conclude that this temple may get started closer to the average time in which Utah temples have gone from an announcement to a groundbreaking. So I ran those numbers, which now has me convinced that this temple’s groundbreaking may be sooner than I had originally projected. This change will be reflected on my timeline for future temple-related events.
175. Brasilia Brazil Temple: Planning phase; site inspected by Church engineers on June 21, 2017; groundbreaking may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2018.
NOTE: As noted above, new information received on July 18, 2017 led to my rethinking this entire section. Particularly, I found out that the site inspection is not indicative of an imminent groundbreaking like I thought it might be. While it is still likely that this temple will have a groundbreaking prior to the end of 2018, it will likely be more towards the end of the year than the beginning, contrary to what I had thought and reported. This seems like a safe change for the moment. If the Lord surprises us and sets a groundbreaking for this temple sooner than estimated here, I will move it up on this list at that time.
176. Greater Manila Philippines Temple: Planning phase; site confirmed; awaiting official name announcement; groundbreaking may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2018.
NOTE: This is another temple that has already had a site confirmed, but that will likely not have a groundbreaking as soon as I had thought and asserted that would happen. Having been advised that temples announced in April 2017 might have at least a year between the site announcement and the groundbreaking, this seems to be a safe and sound adjustment.  As always, once the Lord or the leaders of His Church reveal more about any temple, that new information will be reflected on future reports. For now, that is an update from what I have previously reported. And we are also still waiting to see if and when a more official name might be announced for this temple. I will report on all developments as I become aware of them.
177. Pocatello Idaho: Planning phase; awaiting site confirmation; groundbreaking may take place sometime during early 2019.
NOTE: While it is true that temples in the “Mormon corridor” of Idaho, Utah and Arizona generally get started well in advance of their international counterparts, I learned on July 18, 2017 that some temples on this list needed to be moved (some up, and some down). I also learned that Idaho temples have kept to a general average time-frame from announcement to groundbreaking, and by changing the estimate for this temple, it corresponds more fully to that average.
178. Nairobi Kenya Temple: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; media event held June 14, 2017; groundbreaking may take place sometime during early 2019.
NOTE: As I have considered the media event held last month, I have determined it wiser to assume that a groundbreaking for this temple will happen sooner rather than later. It seems apparent now that this temple will not be the last of those currently announced to have a groundbreaking, as I had originally thought and stated. So it seems wise to make that adjustment. As always, once more information is available, I will go from there.
179. Bangkok Thailand Temple: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking may take place during mid-2019.
NOTE: If member speculation is confirmed within the next year or so (that a building housing Church offices will be reconstructed and repurposed into an edifice housing not just those offices, but also a meetinghouse and the temple as well), then formal construction efforts could begin sooner than indicated here. Until more is known, I am trying to be conservative in my estimates. I would not be surprised in the least if this temple’s groundbreaking happens sooner or later than indicated here.
180. Abidjan Ivory Coast Temple: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2019.
NOTE: With the massive growth that the Church has experienced in the Ivory Coast, some have speculated that the Ivory Coast could get one or two additional temples within the next 15 years. For this first one, this adjustment feels appropriate. Further adjustments will be made once more is known.
181. Quito Ecuador Temple: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking may take place during mid-to-late 2019.
NOTE: Despite the 14-year wait between the announcement and groundbreaking for Ecuador’s first temple, this one for the Ecuadoran capital is not anticipated to have nearly as long a wait. With other adjustments that have been made, this seems appropriate. Further adjustments will be made once more is known.
182. Belem Brazil Temple: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking may take place during late 2019-early 2020.
NOTE: Since we have a site essentially confirmed for the other Brazilian temple above, even though this one was announced a year prior to that one, it is more than likely that we will not see a groundbreaking for this Belem temple until a year or so after the one for Brasilia. If the estimates for all other temples are anywhere close (which they may or may not be), that would make this temple the last of the current bunch to be dedicated. But this is 2 or 3 years out, so changes are always possible within that time depending on what develops between now and then.

ADDITIONAL GENERAL NOTE: Temple announcements within the last three years have come during the April General Conference. They may happen at any time the First Presidency feels inspired to make them, but that has been the pattern since 2015. Also, as noted above, Elder Larry Y. Wilson said in an interview recently that 85 or more temple sites are under consideration for an announcement within the next 15 years. So we could be entering another unprecedented era of temple announcements and construction. That is one big reason why I have expanded my list of temples that may potentially be announced. I also know that sites have been procured for future temples in Managua Nicaragua (which seems most likely, as it is the first of the top ten countries with the strongest LDS presence that does not yet have a temple, and such a temple was proposed by Elder Nelson in 2012), Auckland New Zealand, Port Moresby Papua New Guinea, Bentonville Arkansas, and Missoula Montana (which was proposed by Elder Bednar sometime in 2014). I have been told by many that an official announcement will happen once unit growth and activity in temples within such areas warrants those announcements. If there have been any other sites purchased elsewhere, they have not yet been made known. We also know that several potential temples have been proposed in several locations around the world by many of our prophets and apostles. The Lord will continue to inspire such temple announcements as they are needed, and all developments will continue to be included on subsequent versions of this report.
                                                                                                           
Key:
Bolded numbers and text denote temples whose numbers already exists (for renovations), or is certain due to a scheduled dedication, as well as information that is certain, such as dedication or groundbreaking dates.
Italicized numbers and text denote temples whose numbers may change based on the order in which future dedications and groundbreakings are scheduled.
Underlined numbers and text denote temples whose numbers may change based on progress towards planning, approval, and groundbreaking.
Red text highlights changes from the last posted temple progress report.

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