Giant Mosque Slated for Construction in Sweden‘s 'Little Mogadishu'

© REUTERS / Anders Wiklund/TT News AgencyPolicemen stand outside a mosque in Uppsala January 2, 2015 (photo used for illustration purpose)
Policemen stand outside a mosque in Uppsala January 2, 2015 (photo used for illustration purpose) - Sputnik International
At 5,000 square meters, the new mosque in one of Stockholm's immigrant districts that is a fixture on the government's list of "extremely vulnerable areas," rife with crime and urban blight, will have 18 domes and cost SEK 100 million ($11.5 million).

The construction company NCC and the Rinkeby fundraising foundation are working together to construct a large Mosque in the district of Rinkeby in northwest Stockholm, the company reported in a press release.

According to the design proposal by architect Johan Celsing, the new 18-dome mosque will measure 5,000 square meters and include prayer rooms, classrooms, a café and a gym. Although the parties are currently still working on the design, the total cost construction cost was estimated at SEK 100 million ($11.5 million).

The new mosque will be located in the center of Rinkeby in close proximity to the new police station that is currently being built by the same construction company.

"Local inhabitants have long longed for a mosque. No one has complained about or appealed this decision, there is only strength and joy over the coming spiritual establishment," Ibrahim Bouraleh of the Muslim foundation told national broadcaster SVT.

According to Bouraleh, the mosque will face Islam's holy city of Mecca, thus differing from the city streets' usual grid.

​The necessary building permits have been in place for several years, however only approximately SEK 3 million ($340,000) has been collected so far.

READ MORE: 'Part of Society': Giant Mosque Gets Green Light in 'Turbulent' Swedish Town

"For eight years, we have been trying to get funding, but now we are as close as you can be," Bouraleh said.

Despite the fact that more money is obviously needed, the plan is to start construction as quickly as possible — with Swedish money. Previously, the mosque plans came under fire over foreign donations from, among others, Saudi Arabia, but Bouraleh assured that this is "finished chapter."

The construction company NCC is optimistic about the mission.

"This assignment allows us to rest on the positive experiences we already have in Rinkeby, for example through the police department we are currently building, and to participate in the continued development of the city as a whole. Building a mosque will be also fun technology-wise," Fredrik Anheim, NCC division head said in the press-release.

The construction of the mosque is expected to be completed by 2020.

READ MORE: Planned Mosque on Historic Battlefield Invokes Debate on Sweden's 'Rootlessness'

Rinkeby is part of Greater Stockholm. At over 15,000 inhabitants, Rinkeby is noted for its high concentration of immigrants and their descendants; over 90 percent of its population has a foreign background. As people of African descent constitute close to half of Rinkeby's population, with the Somali diaspora being particularly prominent, Rinkeby has been often referred to as "Little Mogadishu." To match this demographic trend, the Rinkeby mosque's homepage is available in Somali.

​In 2015, Rinkeby was placed on the police list of "extremely vulnerable" areas in terms of crime rate, urban blight and unemployment.

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