The new mosque being built for members of the Chagrin Valley Islamic Center is taking shape on Liberty Road.
“After seeing lots of drawings and plans and pictures for the past couple of years, we are finally seeing the reality come through,” said Solon resident Masroor Malik, who is a board member of the Islamic center. “The community is very excited about actually seeing the building coming up now.
“It’s not a dream anymore,” he added. “It’s a reality.” This will be the first mosque in Solon.
The walls began being built on the two-story structure about two weeks ago.
The $2.5 million mosque is being built on 5.84 acres owned by the Islamic center and directly across from the southern entrance of Spicebush Lane in the Preserve housing development. The project experienced delays earlier this year due to rainy weather, but has recently gained momentum.
The mosque, which will include a 7,000 square foot prayer area, mezzanine, multipurpose space and second story shell, will be constructed in the first phase with plans to be complete by spring of 2021 in time for the Ramadan observance. Future phases include a community center, religious school and gymnasium.
“We were hoping for sooner, but with the weather, we think realistically April of 2021,” Mr. Malik said.
The center broke ground in May and finally began work in July. Initial steps included site work and foundation work.
The general contractor is Amicon which built the Mace Islamic Center in Richmond Heights. Work will continue through the rest of this year as weather permits.
“We are trying to take advantage of as long as we can to work through the winter months,” Mr. Malik said. That would give builders a good start when construction resumes in the spring, he added.
The center continues its fundraising efforts for the building, securing right now more than half of the money needed for the project, Mr. Malik said.
Board members are constantly monitoring the progress and meet regularly on fundraising goals and progress of the project. A fundraiser is planned for next April.
The Islamic Center is still holding its weekly Friday prayers at Signature of Solon and meetings in office space on Station Street.
“They have been very helpful in accommodating our needs,” Mr. Malik said of Signature of Solon.
Mr. Malik said the Muslim community is excited to have a permanent home in the city. “Up until now, we have been renting all these places,” he said.
Discussion of the mosque’s construction has been ongoing since 2012.