Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Temple Additions

At the request of The Tolmans who commented on my last post, I'm going to talk a little about temple additions.

The St. George Utah Temple had a stair addition on the rear of the temple.  This didn't alter the symmetry (as other temple additions have) and blends in fairly well with the temple.  It isn't a perfect addition.  Details such as window style give away that it is a 1970s addition.  There is also an annex with dressing rooms, etc. that is white, but otherwise doesn't match the original temple.

The Logan Utah Temple has been completely gutted and rebuilt on the inside.  At the same time a stair tower was added to the center of the north side.  Unfortunately, this ruins the original symmetry of the temple, and the windows don't match the original temple.  The stone is a fairly good match.  The temple originally jutted out slightly in the same location as the current stair tower (I'm not sure if this was from an earlier stair addition).  In that case, the extension had a circular window that looked nice.  The original annex also matched the stone of the main temple and was castellated.  I'm not sure why they replaced that annex with a cream 1970s style annex that obviously doesn't match the time period of the original temple.  But when the Logan Temple was remodeled in the 1970s, little, if any, attention was paid to historical details or matching styles.  This is painfully apparent on the inside which looks nothing like the exterior would suggest.

The Manti Temple used to have a drive through tunnel beneath the east towers.  This has been blocked off now and parts of it can be seen near the current women's dressing room.  Otherwise I am only aware of the current annex addition with dressing rooms.  In this case, it matches the temple stone and the annex interior matches the styles present in the rest of the temple.

The Salt Lake Temple has had a sealing room annex added (on the right side in this picture).  This addition is 2 stories tall and is found on the north side of the temple.  This ruins the symmetry of the original temple, and the windows don't quite match those found on the original temple.  Even so, this addition blends fairly well and was needed to increase the number of sealing rooms from 3 to 14.

The Boise Idaho, Chicago Illinois, and Dallas Texas Temples were overcrowded upon opening.  Each was remodeled within a few years.  The additions present some problems.  In at least Dallas and Boise you go to the chapel and then you go back through the dressing rooms to get to the endowment rooms.  This is awkward and obviously wasn't the original plan for the building.  Boise's addition isn't the most balanced.  I remember Dallas' addition doing a better job of preserving symmetry.  In addition, one of the formerly detached spires is now in a lobby with glass skylights providing a nice view.  I haven't been to the Chicago Temple, so I am not sure how the addition works there.

Currently, the Buenos Aires Argentina Temple is being remodeled.  Two wings are being added that match the original temple architecture and preserve the original symmetry.

The Monticello Utah Temple was originally built with just one endowment room, one sealing room, the celestial room, and a baptistery.  It was so small because it was a test small temple.  Shortly after completion, the temple was expanded and now looks like most other first style small temples, although the window elevations change along the building, giving away that there is an addition.  Similarly, the Anchorage Alaska Temple was originally built small and has since been expanded.  This gives it a different look.

I've surely missed some temple additions.  I've noticed that most additions haven't done the best jobs of preserving the original architecture (they ruin symmetry, windows don't match, rooms and corridors don't flow right afterwords). Still, most aren't overly offensive, and a few work.

Comment and let us know what you think.


Anonymous said...

Almost every temple more than 30 years old has been either expanded or significantly remodeled. If you want to make sure you haven't missed any, just look for rededication information on

IMHO, the Anchorage Alaska Temple looks like a hodgepodge of granite-clad portable trailers with a mini spire in the center.

The Tolmans said...

Segment on staircases?

Scott said...

Eventually I will. I have so many topics to do. I'll get to it.

Anonymous said...

The Logan Temple didn't originally have a section the juts out on the North side. I assume this is an elevator and it's unfortunate that it couldn't be incorporated into the Temple proper, especially since the building was gutted. There's a picture at this link that shows the Temple in its original form, including the original annex.

Brian said...

It should be noted that Logan Temple was gutted because of an electrical fire that caused large amounts of damage. Additionally there have been smaller changes to many temples, such as the additions of "Wedding Doors" to keep wedding parties out of the way of regular patrons. These can be found on Mount Timpanogos (Added in 2005) and Ogden (added in 2003) prior to its current remodel.

Scott said...

Actually Logan was gutted because the ammount of stairs between rooms made it really hard for elderly or handicapped patrons to use the temple. The fires were much earlier and had been repaired decades before the gutting. Another reason for gutting was to use film endowment instead of live sessions, although film still could have been adapted to the original structure.

The wedding doors are actually a really nice addition to temples in my opinion.

Brett said...

The Sydney Temple was alot smaller when first built. Sometime between the late 80's(when my siblings completed baptisms) and 1993(when I first completed baptisms) a large extension was tacked onto the back and under the Temple which created a large and under utilised terrace outside the now top level Celestial Room. New rooms included a full sized traditional baptistry...(the original had a small chapel style font at the front of the building), a small chapel for patrons to wait before proceeding upstairs, a small cafeteria, change rooms and I think at least one sealing room. This extension created a more substantial link to the non temple annex where there were change rooms, a medium sitting room, kitchen and children's playroom.

Unfortunately the newly created bottom level required an elevator to the main level of the temple...which they plonked in the middle of the new extension which extends above right outside the Celestial Room window...their solution? A random corridor extending detached from the main building blocking the celestial room window but leaving a gap until it turns into the building...thus creating a strange L shaped extension.

The temple extension was completed with endowed members so as to not require a full re-dedication process...although I am not sure who did dedicate the new extensions. The new extension fits in reasonably well minus the elevator hall fiasco on the roof.

Don said...

The Logan Temple was gutted because it was seismically unsound and nothing short of a complete overhaul would make it safe.

Scott said...

Don, you are assuming that a seismic retrofit at that time made the temple safe. I haven't read anything to suggest that it was gutted for seismic reasons; however, I do know that the codes and construction at that time were pretty bad. A seismic retrofit at the time of the remodel would most likely have not made it safe. Our understanding of earthquakes has significantly improved in the last 20 years. At the time of the remodel it wouldn't have been upgraded to be seismically safe. I evaluate buildings from that time period at work and even buildings built in the 1980s often have serious seismic problems.

Ky said...

The Mesa Arizona Temple was expanded significantly in the 1970s, but it blends in quite well. Although the addition is asymmetrical, the Church used the same terra cotta exterior finish made from the same moulds as the original temple. One feature that was lost over time were a series of courtyards that were next to the temple. The courtyard walls were enclosed with windows and new spaces were created for the cafeteria, baptistry chapel, and front entrance.

Brett Stirling said...

Sydney Temple extension.