Murfreesboro mosque gets more time for completion

Murfreesboro mosque gets more time for completion

July 26th, 2012 by Associated Press in Local - Breaking News

The Islamic Center of Murfreesboro plans to open a new mosque soon on Veals Road off Bradyville Pike. The new building will initially be 12,000 square feet, but the congregation has long-term plans to expand it to 52,960 square feet. Lawyers for the embattled Islamic Center of Murfreesboro filed suit today in Nashville, seeking federal help in opening their new mosque in time for Ramadan.

Photo by The Tennessean /Times Free Press.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A federal judge has allowed more time for the construction of a mosque southeast of Nashville.

According to The Tennessean, U.S. District Judge Kevin Sharp on Thursday gave mosque supporters until Aug. 15 to complete construction for its occupancy in Rutherford County.

Opponents have spent two years trying to halt construction of the mosque for the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro. Last week, a federal judge ruled the congregation has a right to worship there as soon as the building is ready.

The 12,000-square-foot mosque will replace a smaller one that's been used for 30 years.

Opposition to the new mosque has included a lawsuit, a large rally, vandalism, arson and a bomb threat.

About another week of work on the mosque is needed, including connections for water and power.

Islamic center leaders say they have outgrown their current space in an office park. There are about 250 families who use the current 2,100-square-foot building, along with about 400 Muslim students from Middle Tennessee State University.

Construction has been held up because a state judge ruled that the county gave inadequate public notice before a site plan was approved. Last week, federal prosecutors publicly sided with mosque supporters.