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Provo Tabernacle video shows building's transformation into Mormon temple

Published December 4, 2013 11:45 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

A timelapse video now making the rounds online captures one of the most amazing engineering feats in recent Utah history: the salvaging of the Provo Tabernacle.

The video — which appears to have been shot from the neighboring Nu Skin building — shows how crews replaced the foundation of the historic Mormon meeting house with stilts. That would have been an impressive feat on any construction site, but considering the building is a 129-year-old, 7-million-pound brick shell, it was nothing short of amazing in this case.

The Provo Tabernacle was gutted by fire Dec. 17, 2010. I had been a reporter for a week at the time and, because I lived two blocks away, I happened to be one of the first non-fire fighters on the scene. It was a gut-wrenching experience to see the building go up in flames and watching the events of the day, I got the sense that many people didn't realize how important the building was to the community until was gone.

In any case, the LDS Church later announced the building would be "restored" as a temple. That process — which has fascinated people around the world — is captured in this new timelapse video.

The downside of the construction is that the historic foundation of an even older structure was removed — it used to lie to the north of the building, where crews create several pools at the beginning of the video — and of course that it will no longer be open to the public.

Still, the construction itself is impressive. Earlier this year The Daily Herald also published a series of images showing blueprints of the temple and plans for the finished temple site.

— Jim Dalrymple II

Twitter: @jimmycdii