Wednesday, January 8, 2020

2020.01.08 - THE SLC TEMPLE: THE REMOVAL FROM THE FOUNDATION

The Salt Lake City Temple is now closed until as early as 2024.

This week, dozens and dozens of moving trucks began hauling away all of the furniture, historical items, artwork, light fixtures, stain glass windows and sacred items.  The Salt Lake Temple which is the epicenter for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has been officially "decommissioned"

On Monday, I watched the movers carry out the contents from inside the temple into these bright orange Allied Semi-Trucks.




Once everything has been hauled off, the demolition of many of the buildings around the Temple will begin. It will be sad to see the Salt Lake Temple Chapel be torn down. I asked to take a photo inside of the chapel so I could show my children what it looked like inside and the beautiful 2 story mural of Christ ascension. Below is the photo of the outside of the chapel:



Here is the photo inside the Chapel. I am not sure if the Church has any plans to preserve this mural because I think it is painted onto the wall itself.


Another part of the demolition will be the sealing rooms that extend out from the North side of the building. One of the reasons for removing this section of the temple is that there are large cracks and  separation occurring.


This is a close up of one section of the granite wall that is starting to show the cracking despite attempts to fill in the gaps with compound adhesives. They will be rebuilding this entire part of the temple with all new sealing rooms.


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In May of 2018, an article was published in the LDS Church News in the Mormon Times section stating that the Salt Lake Temple was built to last through the Millenium. Here is the link to the article.

President Brigham Young stated. "I want to see the Temple built in a manner that it will endure through the Millennium."

“Because the builders recalled President Young’s desire for this temple to stand through time, the structure was very solid. Even at their tops, the walls were six feet thick, and the granite blocks were individually and skillfully shaped to fit snugly together. Nearly a century later, Elder Mark E. Petersen (a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles) attested to the soundness of the temple’s construction. He was in the temple when a rather severe earthquake hit, damaging several buildings around the Salt Lake Valley. 'As I sat there in that temple I could feel the sway of the quake and that the whole building groaned.' Afterward, he recalled, the engineers 'could not find one semblance of damage' anywhere in the temple.”


The article concludes by saying the:

"So, the finished Salt Lake Temple may be more earthquake resistant than some may believe."

I don't know of any other building that has a 14 foot granite foundation.
The Deseret News' LDS Church News of March 30, 1963, published a photograph of when extensive excavations were made around the base of the Salt Lake Temple. The article listed the granite foundation as 14 feet deep.

However, a year later in the April 2109 conference, President Nelson announced that the Temple will close for 4 years for major seismic and structural renovations to help the building withstand a large earthquake. According to Brent Roberts, the church’s director of special projects, this will require placing hundreds of shock absorbers between the ground and the building’s footings and foundations. “It actually will now be the foundation of the temple, so when the earth moves, the base isolation system takes all that movement."

"It actually will now be the foundation of the temple, so when the earth moves, the base isolation system takes all that movement," Roberts said.

So in other words, the original foundation that the Temple was build on will now be replaced by a "base isolation system". Essentially the building is no longer on rock, a steadfast and firm foundation, but on rollers that can move back and forth depending on the movement of the world.


I thought I would close with one of my favorite verses from the Book of Mormon found in Helaman 5:12 
"And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall."