Sunday 12 July 2009

US architect to beautify Golden Temple surroundings


US architect to beautify Golden Temple surroundings

Chandigarh, July 12 (IANS) Internationally acclaimed US-based architect Moshe Safdie will beautify the surroundings of the holiest of Sikh shrines, the Harmandir Sahib, popularly known as the Golden Temple, in Amritsar city.Safdie, who has been involved in the unique Khalsa Heritage Centre (KHC) at Anandpur Sahib - the birth place of ‘Khalsa Panth’ in 1699 - will also give a facelift to the corridor (galiara) around the Golden Temple.
The decision to hand over these projects to Safdie was taken at a meeting of Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal with the architect and his team here Sunday.
Safdie said he would make a detailed presentation on the beautification plan to the Punjab government.
The area from the historic Jallianwala Bagh till the Golden Temple would be beautified, he said. Badal asked him to complete the project within two years.
He said the existing approved plan for beautification of the corridor around the Golden Temple would also be an integral part of his composite plan.
Safdie said the Golden Temple has the potential to become a preferred destination of religious tourism as it is one of the most sacred amongst religious places in the world visited by millions from all faiths every year.
He said he would also utilise the services of renowned Lebanese landscape architect Vladimir Djurovic for planting rare species of trees and shrubs that would be brought from various part of world to accentuate its mystic aura and serenity.
Badal also asked Safdie to develop an area of 60 acres around the Khalsa heritage complex in Anandpur Sahib for landscaping.
The heritage complex project, started on the occasion of the 300th anniversary of the founding of the ‘Khalsa Panth’, was to be completed by 2004 but got delayed.
It is now expected to be dedicated to the nation on April 13, 2010.

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