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Tuesday, September 26, 2017

More Progress Reported on Temples Under Construction

Hello, everyone! After a very long day, I am posting to share some exciting developments that have been reported on temples under construction throughout the world. These reported developments are significant and inspiring. And in every case, these milestones have supported my feelings regarding the estimates I have offered for their completion. An updated version of that report follows. Enjoy, and let me know your thoughts. Thank you for the privilege of your time, and may the Lord be with you until my next post.

Temple Construction Progress (current as of 9/26/17)

NOTE ABOUT FUTURE TEMPLE CONSTRUCTION: As referenced in previous versions of this report, Elder Larry Y. Wilson, the Temple Department Executive Director, stated in an interview given as the open house for the newly renovated Idaho Falls Idaho Temple got underway that the Church currently has around 80 sites under consideration for a subsequent announcement within the next 15 years. While some, if not at least a majority, of those 80 sites will make it to a subsequent announcement, it is significant to think about. That would put the number of temples in any phase at around 260 or so in 2032. It is not hard to believe, therefore, that whether or not the Church makes an official goal to do so, we could see a minimum of 200 operating temples by or before the bicentennial (200th ) anniversary of the restoration of the Church (which will take place on Saturday April 6, 2030. With the Church only having to announce 18 additional temples and to complete the other 25 in any phase, all it would take to reach that milestone is for 3-4 temples being dedicated in each one of the 12.53 years between now and then, which works out to 3 or 4 temples that will need to be dedicated each year. Since the Church will be maintaining at least that average amount for the next 3 years at minimum, it appears to be very doable. For my part, I will be keeping my eyes open for any developments and will pass such news along as I hear of it.

CURRENT TEMPLE STATUS: The Church has 182 temples in various phases. There are 157 operating temples, with 1 that has had construction conclude (and is preparing for its open house) and 1 more that has construction wrapping up prior to its already scheduled dedication later this year. There are additionally 9 others are in various phases of construction and 1 more that had a groundbreaking last year, (with full-scale construction anticipated to begin within the first six months of next year). 1 other has a groundbreaking scheduled (which will take place in just over a month’s time. Of the temples that have been, are now, and will shortly be undergoing renovations, we have 1 that has a rededication scheduled (for the middle of next year), while 1 other is undergoing renovation (with completion anticipated sometime in either late summer or early fall next year), and another 4 have had their closure dates set before the end of this year, in addition to 5 others that we know will be closing early next year (with closure dates having been announced for all but one). The remaining 12 are announced (with either a site announcement or groundbreaking pending).

Construction completed, preparing for open house:
158. Meridian Idaho Temple: Accepting open house reservations (tours set to run for the three weeks between Saturday October 21 and Saturday November 11, except for the relevant Sundays); practices underway for youth cultural celebration; dedication scheduled for Sunday November 19, 2017.

Construction nearing completion; dedication scheduled:
159. Cedar City Utah Temple: Finish work underway on interior; cultural celebration kick-off meeting held; accepting open house reservations beginning Monday October 2; tours set to run for the 22-day period spanning Friday October 27-Saturday November 18, except for the relevant Sundays; dedication scheduled for Sunday December 10, 2017.


Under Construction (completion anticipated by the end of next year (2018)):
160. Rome Italy Temple: Installing art glass; planting trees and shrubs; completion anticipated sometime during mid-2018.
NOTE: With this temple’s status having changed on September 26, it looks as though it is getting closer to being completed. That said, since it is unlikely to be dedicated any sooner, this status update serves to strengthen my theory that a dedication could follow on Sunday June 3 or 10. I also anticipate the dates for the open house and dedication might be announced before the end of 2018, and that this temple, in an iconic city for all Christians, will likely have a 4-6 week open house. I will pass along any updates as soon as I receive them.
161. Concepcion Chile Temple: Angel Moroni on site awaiting installation; cladding progressing on east side of temple; completion anticipated sometime during mid-to-late 2018.
NOTE: Developments were last reported on this temple on September 26, 2017. Based on that update, I am more convinced than ever that this temple’s dedication could follow on Sunday September 2 or 9. I will be sure to pass along any updates on that estimate as I make them.
162. Kinshasa Democratic Republic of the Congo Temple: Royal palm trees planted on grounds; steel framework installed for steeple; completion anticipated sometime during mid-to-late 2018.
NOTE: After reporting the minor update on this temple yesterday, nothing has changed on its status today. It will be interesting to see what happens with this temple by the end of this year. Barring anything unexpected, I still feel safe in venturing Sunday October 21 or 28 as the potential dedication date for this temple. As with everything else, you can count on my sharing any additional updates on this going forward.
163.  Barranquilla Colombia Temple: Pouring concrete curbing and walkways; preparing to clad tower; completion anticipated sometime during late 2018.
NOTE: It is becoming increasingly more likely that this temple may take longer to complete than I originally thought. The status of this temple has not changed at all since I first reported the above developments for the first time (which was on August 11). Given that roughly 1.5 months have passed with no change on the status of this temple, I am adjusting my estimate for this dedication to take place either on Sunday November 18 (the Sunday before Thanksgiving) or, if not then, then 3 weeks later on Sunday December 9 (as the Church has not, to my knowledge, held any temple dedication the Sunday after Thanksgiving or on the first Sunday of December, when the First Presidency holds their annual Christmas devotional). If, by some miracle, this temple makes any kind of progress before the end of this year, or makes substantial progress within the first 8 months of next year, I could see a need to push that estimate up. For now, though, I have felt it wiser to be more conservative in this regard.

Under construction, completion anticipated during 2019:  
164. Durban South Africa Temple: More concrete poured for baptismal font; backfilling temple foundation; polyurethane insulation applied to housing exterior walls; completion anticipated sometime during early 2019.
NOTE: While this temple’s status was updated on September 26, and while that reported progress is a good sign, I have seen very little reason to believe that the dedication for this temple will be any sooner than late April or early May 2019. As the next 6 months come and go, we will know just how reasonable that is, and I will then make any adjustments that may be needed.
165. Fortaleza Brazil Temple: Applying waterproofing membrane to temple exterior walls; meetinghouse exterior walls rising; completion anticipated sometime during early-to-mid 2019.
NOTE: Though many of the temples above this one noted a status change on September 26, this temple has not had a change in status since August 30. This solidifies my feeling that this temple could have a dedication in mid-June 2019. I will pass along any changes to this estimate as I make them in the future.
166. Rio de Janeiro Brazil Temple: Crews preparing to pour exterior walls; completion anticipated sometime during mid-2019.
NOTE: This temple’s current status was first added on September 13, around two weeks ago. While I personally hope to see this temple dedicated shortly after the one above (in Fortaleza), and while I always prefer to be optimistic, I also need to take into account the potential rededication time-frames for temples that are closing at various times during the rest of this year. With all of that in mind, I have felt that this temple’s dedication might be scheduled to take place sometime during mid-to-late August 2019. If anything changes my thinking on this, I will pass that along.
167. Lisbon Portugal Temple: Structural framing for main floor underway; meetinghouse cladding progressing; completion anticipated sometime during mid-to-late 2019.
NOTE: This temple’s status was last updated on September 10. In the half-month that has transpired since then, I have not seen any reason to alter my estimate for this temple’s dedication time-frame. Until I am made aware of such a reason, I am estimating the dedication may happen in mid-November 2019. This might especially be true given that 5 of the newer temples that have a renovation closure date scheduled are almost certain to have a rededication well in advance of a dedication for this temple. I am constantly keeping my eye out for information, and will be sure to pass along any updates I make as that becomes necessary.

Temples anticipated to be completed sometime during 2020:
168. Arequipa Peru Temple: Pouring second floor exterior walls; completion anticipated sometime during early 2020.
NOTE: The status of this temple was last updated on September 19. I have before offered my reasons behind asserting that this temple will be more likely to be the first one dedicated in 2020. Other sources have said we could see it dedicated before the end of 2019, but until I see sufficient reason to believe that, I prefer to be cautious in my estimates. I have felt we could see this dedication in late February or early March. I will be sure to pass along anything that causes me to reevaluate that estimate.

Construction pending:
169. Winnipeg Manitoba Temple: Groundbreaking held Saturday December 3, 2016; plans being slightly modified; full-scale operations anticipated to begin in the first or second quarter of 2018; completion anticipated sometime between early-to-mid 2020.
NOTE: This temple, which had a groundbreaking almost 10 months ago, has been delayed repeatedly, first by an awful Canadian winter, and is now still halted by a need to modify the plans for the temple. Depending on how quickly that gets resolved, work could begin in just over 3 months, or it could be delayed again by another 2 or 3 months. Until work does begin in earnest, an exact completion time-frame is hard to pin down. But a conservative estimate is late April or early May. As with everything else, I will pass along any updates as I become aware of them.

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: Barring anything unexpected happening, full-scale construction for this temple is anticipated to begin on the Monday following its groundbreaking. If that happens, and if reports are correct (that this temple will be comparable in size to the Kinshasa DR Congo Temple), then we could see this temple constructed within 2 years and 7 months (which is 1.5 years sooner than the time-frame in which the only other Caribbean temple (in Santo Domingo Dominican Republic) was built. I have therefore ventured a completion estimate for sometime in late April or early May 2020. I will continue to pass along any updates to this estimate as I make them.

Scheduled for rededication:
20. Jordan River Utah Temple: Closed for renovation; rededication scheduled for Sunday May 20, 2018.

Undergoing Renovation (rededication anticipated within the next year or so):
41. Frankfurt Germany Temple: Closed for renovation; roof slab poured for basement addition; rededication anticipated sometime during mid-2018.
NOTE:  As I have previously noted, this temple will likely be dedicated sometime after both the rededication of the Jordan River Temple and the dedication of the Rome Italy Temple, but prior to the dedication of the Concepcion Chile Temple. Until more is known, I am setting that estimate for Sunday August 12 or 19, which is slightly later than I have previously estimated. As with everything else, I will be sure to post any updates to this estimate as I make them going forward.

Renovations Scheduled (official closure dates announced):
80. Memphis Tennessee Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation on Saturday September 30, 2017; rededication may take place sometime during early-to-mid 2019.
NOTE: With this temple’s renovation closure date confirmed by the Church’s redone website for temple information, and with the knowledge that this renovation will change the interior and exterior appearance of this temple, an estimate of 18-19 months seems appropriate for this temple’s renovation process, which would put its dedication sometime during mid-to-late May 2019. As this process gets underway and continues, I will make any additional adjustments that may be needed.
18. Tokyo Japan Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation on Monday October 2, 2017; rededication may take place sometime during early-to-mid 2020.
NOTE: As already noted, this temple is a smaller one from the Kimball era, and it is being renovated mainly to upgrade electrical and mechanical systems. With the renovation anticipated to be finished at some point in 2020, I have felt that a rededication could happen sometime in late May or early June. As this process gets underway and more is known, I will pass that along.
95. Oklahoma City Oklahoma Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation on Sunday October 15, 2017; rededication may take place sometime during early-to-mid 2019.
NOTE: While it is true that this temple has more room for expansion than Memphis does, it does not seemly likely that such an expansion is part of the plan. Therefore, a revised estimate of 15 months seems likely for the completion of that renovation process. Based on that time-frame, I am also estimating a subsequent rededication during mid-March 2019. As that process unfolds, I will pass along any changes to that line of reasoning.
112. Asuncion Paraguay Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation on Sunday October 29, 2017; rededication may take place sometime during early-to-mid 2019.
NOTE: The interesting thing about this temple’s renovation plans is that any mention of it closing on the date specified (or even at all in 2017) has been removed. Probably just a technical glitch. In the meantime, unless an expansion of this temple is planned (which is unlikely at this point), a 15-month estimate seems reasonable for this temple’s completion, which would put the dedication sometime during mid-to-late April 2019 (sometime after General Conference). That will likely change as this process continues, but for now, it seems safe.
68. Raleigh North Carolina Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation on Wednesday January 10, 2018; rededication may take place sometime during mid-2019.
NOTE: If the member contacts I found in North Carolina are correct, the renovation of that state’s only temple will not involve or include an expansion of any kind. With that in mind, a 17-month estimate seems appropriate for this temple, which allows for anything unexpected. And based on that estimate, it would make sense if this temple had a rededication scheduled for sometime during early-to-mid August 2019. I will pass along any updates to that estimate that may be needed within the next year as this process will be well underway by that time.
94. Baton Rouge Louisiana Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation on Thursday February 1, 2018; rededication may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2019.
NOTE: Unless an expansion is planned for this temple (which, as noted previously, seems doubtful), then it is more than likely that the renovation will only take around 17 months or so. With that in mind, it is not hard to believe that we could see the rededication of this temple at some point during mid-September 2019. As with everything else, I will be sure to pass along any updates to this line of reasoning.
13. Oakland California Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation on Monday February 19, 2018; rededication may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2019.
NOTE: As previously noted, the stated purpose for this temple’s renovation is to upgrade and update electrical and mechanical systems. Therefore, an expansion is likely not part of those plans. Bearing in mind that this temple is anticipated to be rededicated prior to the end of 2019, I have felt that a 17-month estimate for this process would be appropriate. In running the resulting calculation, that would put this temple’s rededication happening sometime during mid-December 2019. Obviously, as this renovation gets underway in five months and makes progress, we will know more about how reasonable that estimate might be, and I will make any adjustments that may be needed.
16. Washington D. C. Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation on Sunday March 4, 2018; rededication may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2020.
NOTE: With what is currently known about this temple’s renovation (having confirmed the exact date, and also knowing that it is mainly to upgrade and update the mechanical and electrical system), in taking the larger size of this temple into account (which will extend the process), a 32-month estimate seems appropriate. That would put this temple’s rededication sometime during mid-November 2020. As the next year unfolds, more will be known, and any adjustments will be provided.

Temples which have had a renovation announced but for which an exact closure date is not yet known:
7. Mesa Arizona Temple: Scheduled to close for renovation in May 2018 (exact date has not yet been announced); rededication may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2020.
NOTE: Because the Mesa temple has been renovated once before, it is not anticipated to take as long to complete this renovation (which is being done primarily to upgrade the electrical and mechanical systems throughout the temple). Therefore, an initial estimate of 26 months seems appropriate, which would put the estimate for this temple’s rededication somewhere around early-to-mid September 2020. Within the next year, this process will be well underway, and more will be known about any adjustments that may need to be made. Until then, it seems to be a sound adjustment to what I have previously stated.

NOTE ON FUTURE GROUNDBREAKINGS: Until the prophet (or those he authorizes to do so in his behalf) announces a groundbreaking for any or all of these temples, the timeframes listed below reflect merely my own thoughts, theories, and conjectures, based on what is now known about how soon any of them might happen. I continue to hope and pray for news of other groundbreakings, but time will tell how imminent any of these events will be, and whether or not they will unfold as presented below. I am keeping an eye out for developments and will pass along any updates as I receive them, including any and all changes to these estimates. Until something more official comes out, this information should not be taken as gospel, as it will be consistently altered as developments change these estimates. And speaking personally, I will be just as happy if I am proven wrong on any of this as I will be if anything in this section is proven right. For me, the privilege has always been the opportunity to contribute to discussions in this regard.

Announced temples that may have a groundbreaking anytime between now and the end of 2018:
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: If the information I have received about this temple and its progress is correct, the year of preconstruction which the contractor for this temple mentioned was needed prior to its groundbreaking began in March 2017. If that proves to be the case, then a groundbreaking could easily take place in mid-March, which would allow that to happen prior to winter’s arrival in April. I am estimating more specifically that the exact date may be Saturday March 10 or 17. As with everything else, I will pass along any updates to this line of thought and reasoning as I make them.
172. Urdaneta Philippines Temple: Planning and approval phase; awaiting government approval and official site announcement; groundbreaking could take place sometime during mid-2018.
NOTE: With a potential site having been identified for this temple, if that is confirmed at any point prior to the end of this year, the groundbreaking for this temple will likely happen sooner rather than later, especially now that the delays that once prevented this temple’s construction progress are over. It is my revised estimate that this temple’s groundbreaking could take place in mid-to-late May, and, more specifically, on or around May 19 or 26. I have checked into weather conditions during that time, and it would work well then. As with everything else I post, I will be sure to pass along any updates to this estimate as I make them.
173. Harare Zimbabwe Temple: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking could take place during mid-2018.
NOTE: Despite the statement made by Africa Southeast Area President Kevin S. Hamilton (who said that this temple would likely have a site announcement and groundbreaking in relatively short order once 2017 began), the year is almost finished, and we are no closer to a change in this temple’s status than we were at the beginning of this year. Wanting to be as optimistic as possible but also to allow for anything unexpected, I am setting a revised estimate for this temple’s groundbreaking to take place in mid-June, and, more specifically, on either June 9 or 16. I will be sure to pass along any updates to this estimate that might be needed.
174. Bangkok Thailand Temple: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking may take place during mid-2018.
NOTE: As part of my ongoing efforts to research the potential order in which announced temples may have a groundbreaking, I took a look at this temple particularly. While it is true that we only have member speculation that an existing building will be reconstructed and repurposed (in the style of the Manhattan New York and Hong Kong China Temples), until we can be sure that this will not be the case, I have to go with what is known.  The Manhattan New York and Hong Kong China Temples both had a groundbreaking in a comparatively shorter amount of time than most other temples. So if the existing building will be repurposed, it seems safe to surmise that a groundbreaking could take place during early-to-mid August. I have set a more specific estimate for Saturday August 4 or 11. As with everything else, I will pass along any updates to this line of thought.
175. Abidjan Ivory Coast Temple: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2018.
NOTE: I know that this temple has not yet had a site confirmed, but as I felt a need to reevaluate the likely order in which announced temples might have a groundbreaking, I have run the numbers to recalculate my estimate. I hope with all my heart that we will have a site confirmed for this temple within the next 9 months or so. If we do, I could see the Church setting the groundbreaking for this temple to take place sometime during mid-September, which would be either Saturday September 8 or 15. If nothing happens for this temple by the early months of next year, I will reevaluate things at that point.
176. Saratoga Springs Utah: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking may take place sometime during late 2018.
NOTE: As previously noted, while a site announcement is pending on this temple, if one is confirmed within the next 6-8 months, and if this temple conforms to the average time within which other Utah County temples have gone from announcement to groundbreaking, then I could see this temple having a groundbreaking sometime during late October or early November, or, more precisely, on either Saturday October 27 or November 3. I will be keeping an eye out for any developments and will be sure to pass those along.
177. Alabang Manila Temple: Planning phase; site confirmed; awaiting official name announcement; groundbreaking may take place sometime during late 2018.
NOTE: As with other temples in this section, I did more research on issues that would affect progress on this temple, primarily climate & temperature. Climate-wise, Manila has the same weather pretty much year-round. Therefore, it is my new estimate that the groundbreaking for this temple could take place in mid-December (which would be on Saturday December 9 or 16). If the groundbreakings for both of the Philippines temples are held during 2018, this would be the first time in Church history that two temples would simultaneously be under construction on that island nation. As always, I will be sure to pass along any updates to this line of thought and reasoning as I become aware of them.
178. Brasilia Brazil Temple: Planning phase; site inspected by Church engineers on June 21, 2017; groundbreaking may take place sometime during early 2019.
NOTE: As part of my massive ongoing efforts to revise my thoughts on the potential timeframe for future temple-related events, I took another look at this temple. What I found that led me to move other temples around today also led me to give this temple another look. And in that regard, I found out that, in terms of climate, the period from January to March is the best time to visit Brasilia. Bearing in mind that it would take a miracle to have this groundbreaking take place in six months, I have felt it wiser to adjust this temple’s groundbreaking estimate to early 2019, and have felt that a more specific time-frame may be mid-February. As with everything else, I will pass along any updates as I make them.
179. Quito Ecuador Temple: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking may take place during early-to-mid 2019.
NOTE: As I have felt a need to revisit the order in which announced temples may have a groundbreaking, for a revised determination on this temple, I took a look at temples in the region of Western South America (where this temple will rise). In that area (with the exception of the first Ecuadoran temple, which took over 14 years), the average time in which temples in that area went from site announcement to groundbreaking has been 2 years, 6 months. That said, this temple has not yet had a site confirmed. So I am setting a revised estimate for 3 years. I will therefore place my estimate for this groundbreaking as sometime during late April or early May 2019. As with everything else, I will be sure to post any changes to this theory.
180. Pocatello Idaho: Planning phase; awaiting site confirmation; groundbreaking may take place sometime during mid-2019.
NOTE: As I have done with other temples, I calculated the average time within which Idaho’s other temples have gone from announcement to groundbreaking. Based on that estimate, I have adjusted my thinking that this temple will have a groundbreaking at some point in mid-June 2019. That said, I recognize that temples within the “Mormon corridor” of Utah, Arizona, and Idaho have typically been able to get started faster than temples elsewhere within the US or any other nations. I will keep my eyes open for anything that convinces me to change this again, and will continue to pass that information along.
181. Nairobi Kenya Temple: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; media event held June 14, 2017; groundbreaking may take place sometime during mid-to-late 2019.
NOTE: As mentioned earlier, I took a look at the average time within which temples in Africa have gone from announcement to groundbreaking. And as a result of that double-check, I have revised my estimate for this groundbreaking as well. I can now see it happening in early-to-mid August. As with everything else, I will pass along any updates as I am made aware of them.
182. Belem Brazil Temple: Planning phase; awaiting official site announcement; groundbreaking may take place during late 2019.
NOTE: Since there has been no change on this temple’s status since its announcement 1.5 years ago, unless something changes, we may find that this temple is the last one of the current bunch to have a groundbreaking. I sincerely hope that is not the case, but want to play it safe. For that reason, I am estimating this temple will have a groundbreaking sometime during either late October or early November. I will keep my eye on things and let you all know if my thinking on this changes.

ADDITIONAL GENERAL NOTE: As noted above, Elder Larry Y. Wilson stated in an interview on the last day of April 2017 (as the Idaho Falls Temple Open House was underway) that the Church has 80 potential sites that are under consideration for an official announcement within the next 15 years. As previously noted, all of the last 12 temples that have been announced from January 2015 to now have seen that happen during April General Conference. So that may continue. But it is also true that such announcements can come any time the Church president or those authorized to do so in his behalf feel impressed to make them. Since 80 temples in 15 years averages out to 5 new announcements per year between now and sometime in 2032, we could be entering an era where a few are announced in each conference and when some will be announced in between each April and October. Future versions of this report will feature any and all ongoing developments in this regard. Stay tuned for that, and thank you for the privilege of your time.

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.