August Miller, Deseret Morning News
The first walls of the Draper Temple can be seen.

SOUTH JORDAN — Plans and drawings for an LDS temple in the Daybreak community have received a stamp of approval from the Planning Commission and glowing reviews from city staff.

The site plan and conceptual drawings for South Jordan's second temple, to be built by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, were approved without hesitation Tuesday.

Plans for the approximately 60,000-square-foot South Jordan Temple, to be built at 11022 S. 4000 West on a bluff just off Bangerter Highway, meet all of the city's engineering, planning, public works and fire department requirements, said Brian Preece, deputy community development director.

City officials also were impressed with the proposed look of the new temple.

"It's a beautiful building," said Chip Dawson, city spokesman. "We know there are many individuals in South Jordan and the surrounding areas who are going to enjoy this beautiful new addition to our city."

The temple site covers a little more than 11 acres on the east side of Daybreak, Kennecott Land's 4,200-acre master-planned community.

It's one of two new temples for the Salt Lake Valley announced by LDS Church President Gordon B. Hinckley on Oct. 1, 2005, during the church's 175th Semiannual General Conference. No specific location for the other temple has yet been announced, though it is believed to be in the extreme southwest part of the Salt Lake Valley.

The South Jordan Temple will face east, with its main access point connecting to 4000 West. Other access points are planned on the southwest side of the site from Braidwood Drive and on the northwest side from Blue Mesa Way.

The city notified property owners within 300 feet of the site about Tuesday's public hearing, but none attended.

Groundbreaking ceremonies have been scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 16, at 10 a.m., according to a letter sent to LDS stake presidents in the area. Attendance at the groundbreaking is by invitation only, but the event will be broadcast to all LDS stake centers within the temple district.

Church spokesman Dale Bills said the boundaries of that temple district "have not yet been finalized, but it is expected that (the temple) will serve stakes in the western Salt Lake Valley." A DVD of the groundbreaking services will be produced and made available at some point for those who are unable to attend or view the proceedings, according to the announcement by the First Presidency.

Daybreak is projected to include more than 13,000 homes along with 5.2 million square feet of office space, 2.4 million square feet of retail space and 1.5 million square feet of industrial space. It is anticipated that a TRAX line will eventually serve the area.

No official name for the structure has yet been announced, but official literature now refers to it as the "South Jordan Utah" temple. Though a construction schedule hasn't been detailed, it is anticipated the structure will become the fourth LDS temple in the Salt Lake Valley.

Its location within the same city as the Jordan River Temple (dedicated in 1981), which is roughly 30 blocks to the east and 12 blocks north of the new temple site, makes South Jordan the only city in the world that will be home to two LDS temples. Population growth in southwest Salt Lake County has exploded since the mid-1980s, when much of the area was still pasture and farmland.

Across the valley to the east, much the same growth scenario is playing out near the Draper Temple, which is now under construction on a 12-acre site in the Corner Canyon area at 2000 East and 14000 South. Draper city officials approved the plans last spring, and a groundbreaking ceremony followed in August.

That building will be 57,000 square feet, with the spire reaching 166 feet, topped by a gold-leafed statue of the angel Moroni. Designed much like the Idaho Falls Idaho Temple, it will feature white walls, a central spire and a stair-step design.

Completion of the Draper Temple is expected in 2008.

A new temple typically means an increase in the property values in the area, and the South Jordan site was no different. Prices for building lots shot up after the announcement, as they did when plans for the Draper Temple were announced in October 2004. Property values around that site more than doubled. A similar increase occurred in 1995 when plans for the Bountiful Temple were announced.

The LDS Church currently has 124 temples in operation worldwide, with 10 others announced or under construction.

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