Work begins on new Buddhist temple in Canberra

ABC, March 17, 2013

Canberra, Australia -- Construction of a new Chinese Buddhist temple is underway in Canberra's north.

The Hu Guo Bao En complex is being built on Kelleway Avenue in Nicholls and will feature a temple, landscaped gardens and residential quarters for monks.

Member for Ginninderra Chris Bourke attended a foundation stone laying ceremony on Sunday.

He says the temple will be open to all.

"The Chinese Buddhist community in the northside has been using temporary facilities until now," he said.

"This will be a purpose built facility which will celebrate their form of worship and their religion, as well as being open to our local community, as well as residents, to be able to go and enjoy the beautiful gardens and temple buildings."

Mr Bourke says construction is expected to take two years.

"This will be an important place of worship for Chinese Buddhists," he said.

"The services will be conducted in Mandarin and it's a great addition to the vibrant and multicultural community that we have here in Canberra, where we celebrate diversity and look forward to celebrating religious differences."