October 3rd, 2010
05:10 PM ET

First images of proposed NYC Islamic center

The group behind the proposed Islamic cultural center near New York's ground zero has released what it is calling the first official images of the center.

The website for the project, known as the Park51 Community Center, said that the "new images display an updated exterior and provide a first look into Park51’s interior and lend some insight on how we’re envisioning the project," in a post that went up Tuesday but that initially drew little notice.

Plans for the $100 million, 13-story center include a 500-seat auditorium, classrooms and conference rooms, space for social events, a 9/11 memorial, a pool and a gym.

Scores of Muslims are already using the Lower Manhattan site as a mosque.

The imam behind the proposed Islamic center and mosque is largely avoiding New York City because of security concerns and is receiving protection from the New York Police Department, according to those close to the imam.

The images of the project were produced by SOMA Architects, which Park51's website identifies as the project's architectural design consultants.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: 'Ground zero mosque' • Islam • Muslim • New York • United States

soundoff (781 Responses)
  1. patrick

    This is how the roman empire fell, gotta love multi-culturalism...

    October 3, 2010 at 9:52 pm |
  2. Texas

    Am I the only one that sees numerous Star of David shapes in the triangles? Now that would be a rash wouldn't it?

    October 3, 2010 at 9:51 pm |
  3. Babs

    You cannot build a "bridge to understanding" over the chasm of the shared pain of an entire nation. The message that many Americans are getting is "Get over it", a defiant and insensitive foundation for a building that is supposedly attempting to bridge the differences between us. It is not bigoted to ask that the Park51 group show respect and act towards others with the sensitivity that many Americans have tried to exhibit toward American Muslims since 9/11. Tolerance and understanding are two way streets.

    October 3, 2010 at 9:36 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Babs: With all due respect, when sites for houses of worship are being vandalised in as far away as Tennessee, when people are being killed because they answer "yes" to "are you a muslim", when holy men have to fear for their lives, when holy books are being burned, I do not see respect or tolerance or sensitivity in this country. If people are offended that a community center that will serve lower Manhattan and boost the economy in that area is being sponsored by muslims because they cannot tell the difference between their American neighbour of decades and a terrorist from half way around the world, then I too am inclined to say, "get over it." Grief is no excuse for prejudice.

      October 4, 2010 at 9:22 pm |
  4. cape12

    Perhaps we should listen closer to our muslim friends who are using this space? They seem to know well that tax dollars will be paying, while they are praying. And I would love an answer about proper attire for the swimming pool. Could a woman go swim in an acceptable American swimsuit? Will the artistic area put on plays etc? Could they do any play? i.e.Fiddler on the Roof or A Chorus Line? What say you ABUDU? All of Europe is on Terrorist Alert, perhaps because the muslims were made unhappy over the burka ban? I love my country and believe in freedom of speech and religion. But I am not about to sit helpless while Nero fiddles.

    October 3, 2010 at 9:34 pm |
  5. ray gibbs

    Splendid looking. Build it. Its your property. America's way.

    October 3, 2010 at 9:32 pm |
  6. Ali

    Jews were blamed for the death of Jesus for 2000Yrs.Muslims will be blamed for 9/11 for 2000Yrs.

    What has changed?

    October 3, 2010 at 9:31 pm |
  7. Matt McHugh

    I like the facade in the renderings. Stark, bold, evocative of an Islamic lamp, but with an element of organic asymmetry. Architecturally, it would be an interesting addition to the area.

    October 3, 2010 at 9:31 pm |
  8. Frogist

    It's beautiful. I hope it comes to fruition.

    October 3, 2010 at 9:17 pm |
  9. OhNoWeCant

    You know who you should feel bad for? The Atheist, we have to share a planet with all you nut jobs that are killing and bickering over your imaginary friends. Religion is nothing more than coordinated insanity.

    October 3, 2010 at 9:08 pm |
  10. Robert

    Looks like a hidden meaning of a building thats been destroyed, twisted with all the windows blown out sort of like someone is making fun of a building thats been destroyed to me if you want my first impression. I think it's ugly. If someone told me it was designed to mock the rein of the twin towers I would believe it in a minute, No a New York minute. I think the whole idea is repulsive, If you want healing don't inflict your meaning of healing on New Yorkers let them develop their own individual meaning New Yorkers are tough people always have been. So leave it alone or live with whatever the most unforgiving of them give to you.

    October 3, 2010 at 9:07 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Robert: The people who are building and will be using this center are new yorkers. So in your own words, "leave it alone".

      October 4, 2010 at 9:07 pm |
  11. RW

    I predict that some gutsy person/people take care of that trophy Mosque.

    October 3, 2010 at 9:06 pm |
    • Tssshhh

      yes. i like the sound of that. take good care of the trophy mosque. islamic warriors have proven that concrete, steel and glass can burn like a torch.... light er' up.

      October 3, 2010 at 10:58 pm |
    • Frogist

      Well well... now who's inciting violence and terrorism. Pleas let me know what religion you are so I can call all people of your religion terrorists too.

      October 4, 2010 at 9:00 pm |
  12. Tom R

    Even in their renderings it looks out of place like it doesnt belong. I have nothing against muslims but when repeated requests to make public your funding go ignored it raises alot of red flags. The two people who are thought to hae largley funded the purchase of the site have both been under investigation for some time. One for defauding medicare and medicaid to the tune of 90 million dollars and for runnung illegal medical clinics and the other for various charges involving his rental properties. The latter, i believe, was poor just a few years ago working as a waiter. I wonder wear he got 10 + million dollars so fast.

    October 3, 2010 at 9:04 pm |
  13. Ruspanic

    So this Islamic center is supposed to "promote inter-community peace, tolerance and understanding locally in New York City, nationally in America and globally.
" Really? How's that working for you?

    October 3, 2010 at 9:04 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Ruspanic: Well I've learned a lot about Islam and religious tolerance and met some nice muslim people who care about the principles this country was founded on... so I say, yeah! It's working out great for me. Can't wait till it's actually built.

      October 4, 2010 at 8:57 pm |
  14. Bev

    Though this may be a beautiful building someplace else, it absolutely is a nightmare in this historical district.

    October 3, 2010 at 9:03 pm |
  15. OhNoWeCant

    Say what you want about Bush but he wouldn't of let this happen.

    October 3, 2010 at 9:02 pm |
  16. David

    The exterior looks like a collection of a whole bunch of stars of David. Maybe the architect is a Jew. Good luck raising money for the project now among Muslims.

    October 3, 2010 at 9:02 pm |
  17. bob

    If you look at a wart very closely you will see it has the same texurized lookas this place. Unattractive. Hope that what they say the building is for is the truth, but I doubt it.

    October 3, 2010 at 8:50 pm |
  18. KalmVsKhaos

    Muslims go home!!! You're not welcomed in America and neither is your silly Victory Center. The only "Victory" will be you guys heading back home to where you belong! Say NO to the Ground Zero Mosque! And NO! to a so called religion that is stuck in the stone age!

    October 3, 2010 at 8:50 pm |
    • Armin

      to KalmVsKhaos: it would be better if racist people like you get out of the US and the earth for that matter. You realize that there are American born muslims right? the problem is not the religion the problem is extremism. get that in your head!

      October 4, 2010 at 2:53 pm |
  19. Matt

    Dang! Can you imagine being the guy who has to replace one of those windows if it cracks!

    October 3, 2010 at 8:50 pm |
  20. alexander

    go-ahead build it... fill it up with muslims.. then we all can see the true revenge....

    October 3, 2010 at 8:39 pm |
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