By Kent Larsen
Redlands California Notice Confuses Neighbors, City
REDLANDS, CALIFORNIA -- The news that the LDS Church will build a
small Temple in Redlands, California led to a city council session on
the planned building Tuesday night. Councilman Kacey Haws, an LDS
Church member, tried to give his fellow city councilmen an idea of
the Temple's size, purpose and impact. But meanwhile, recent articles
in local newspapers showed a good deal of confusion and speculation
among Redlands citizens and others in California's "Inland Empire"
about the building.
At the city council meeting Tuesday night, Hawes explained that the
building would be about 15,000 square feet, smaller than some LDS
meetinghouses in the area and just one twelfth the size of the Los
Angeles Temple. "The temple needs to fit in (with the) surrounding
community. This one will be fabulous," Haws said.
The location of the building is still not known, although local
newspapers have speculated on the location, based on where the Church
owns land in the area. Possible locations include a five acre parcel
next to an LDS meeting house at Wabash Avenue and Fifth Street and a
10 acre tract near Alabama Street and San Bernardino Avenue.
However, the latter site is located in what is known as the "doughnut
hole," a 1,000 acre area of unincorporated county land that is
completely surrounded by the city of Redlands. While putting a
building in that area may eliminate some of the bureaucracy
associated with constructing a building, it also may put the building
at risk from what neighbors might do with their land. One letter to
the editor of the Relands Daily Facts suggested that a proposed
sewage treatment facility might end up next door to the Temple, and
the city of Redlands couldn't do anything about it, because of an
agreement between the city and the county.
When the building was announced, local planning officials expressed
surprise, saying that they had not yet received a building permit
application from the Church. "I didn't know about this," said Jeff
Shaw, city planning and community development director, who met with
other city officials Monday to talk about the issue. "We were
speculating as to where this might be. I was wondering: Is it
possibly in the 'doughnut hole'?"
Meanwhile, other local articles looked at the potential economic
impact of the building. Because the Temple will be drawing from a
district of 70,000 members, Hawes suggested to the city council that
the impact of the building will be positive, both from members from
outside Redlands traveling there to attend the Temple, as well as
from new retail establishments built to serve them. But Highland City
manager Sam J. Racadio, who also is an LDS Church member, doubts that
the economic impact will be significant, "I don't think there would
be a big influx of people, because they're not open all of the time,"
Racadio said. "I don't think it would generate that much traffic, but
the people in the Inland Empire would generally use it."
A San Bernardino Sun article, on the other hand, suggested that the
Temple could have a positive impact on the cultural growth of
Redlands. The article reasons that the encouragement that the Church
gives cultural activities will make the Temple a magnet for those
But not everyone is so positive about the potential impact of the
building. One reader wrote to the Redlands Daily Facts worrying about
the Temple's location and aesthetic impact, "I implore the city
building officials to limit the proposed temple size. We do not need
a huge and grotesque building in our town," wrote the anonymous
Smaller temple planned for Inland-area Mormons
Riverside CA Press-Enterprise 2May01 D1
By Sharyn Obsatz: Press-Enterprise
RELIGION: The building that the LDS has in mind for Redlands will be cozy, not huge, city officials are told.
Redlands, Calif., Council Debates Merits of Proposed Mormon Temple
Ontario CA Business Press 30Apr01 D1
By Jospeh Ascenzi: The Business Press
How big will it be?
Redlands CA Daily Facts 27Apr01 D1
New LDS temple could fuel Redlands' cultural growth
San Bernardino co CA Sun 27Apr01 D1
How does that work?
Redlands CA Daily Facts 25Apr01 OD1
Plans for Redlands temple unconfirmed locally
San Bernardino co CA Sun 24Apr01 D1
By Stephen Wall
Temple plans blessing for faithful
Redlands CA Daily Facts 24Apr01 D1
Mormon temple to be built in Redlands
Redlands CA Daily Facts (AP) 22Apr01 D1