Public hearing the only obstacle remaining for Muslim prayer tower
By an overwhelming majority of 45 votes to three at the Copenhagen City Council, the construction of a new mosque has been pre-approved as part of a new local plan for the city’s Amager district, reports Politiken newspaper.
The 5,500 sqm mosque will be just one of several buildings at ‘The Battery’, a business and residential complex designed by the architectural firm, the Bjarke Ingels Group. The firm calls The Battery an ‘activity centre’ that is ‘an architectural interpretation of an Alpine landscape in the centre of Copenhagen’.
According to the drafts, the new mosque will be decidedly unconventional, a modern design resembling a ziggurat.
Bo Asmus Keldgaard, the head of the city’s technical and environmental administration, said the mosque’s approval was in line with the religious freedom Denmark upholds.
‘Islam is the second largest religion in Copenhagen with more than 50,000 followers, so those people should absolutely have a mosque,’ he said.
Although local politicians agreed in 1992 that Muslims should have their own mosque in the city, no concrete plan had been approved for the construction until now.
However, one more hurdle must be overcome before the mosque’s building is 100 percent guaranteed. A public hearing on the plan for The Battery will take place on 28 October, where local residents will have the opportunity to offer opinions to the city council, prior to a final approval of the plan in February.
Funding for the mosque’s construction will be provided by the Islamic Joint Council.