Wednesday, March 2, 2011
For those interested in zoning and religious buildings, the current enforcement proceedings aiming to close down the Tablighi Jamaat mosque in London make interesting reading. While local planners are resisting the application to maintain the mosque because of traffic levels, land contamination and visual impact, the enforcement hearing has been well informed about Tablighi Jamaat's apprent religious and political views, as well as attitudes to women. The dispute takes place in the context of the Tablighi Jamaat's aim to build a much larger, 'mega-mosque' on the site, a move which is opposed by many within the Muslim community.
Inevitably this planning dispute is taking place in the context of much larger debates about multiculturalism, identity and human rights. This comes to no suprise to land use lawyers of course ... land use issues are, whether acknowledged or not, inevitably much broader than the immediate impacts of the site.