In the early morning of December 17, 2010 a misplaced electrical light started a fire in the attic of the historic Provo tabernacle. The fire completely destroyed the building except for the exterior masonry walls.
The tabernacle was originally built in 1882 and dedicated in 1898. The center spire was removed in 1917. The tabernacle has been a center for the community’s activities for the last 100 years. In the October 2011 LDS General Conference, after working through a preliminary design, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Church President, President Monson, announced that the tabernacle would transition to the Provo City Center Temple. The design then began in earnest and required 14 months to complete.
In order to transform the tabernacle to a temple, a majority of the temple support spaces had to be located in the basement and under the north plaza. This would require excavating down 40 feet below the building with the help of 411 micropiles.
To create the design vocabulary for the building, historic details were used from original Provo Tabernacle. Other inspiration came from Victorian Design movements: Eastlake and High Gothic Revival. Materials and finishes historically had high contrast and vivid colors, which were toned and controlled for a temple experience. Eastlake movement predominantly rejected the traditional Victorian color pallet and used three color selections: Olive green, Rust red, and Ochre yellow, with touches of green/blue.
Most of the exterior of the shell was able to be reused instead of tearing it down. In an effort to not only match the historic look of the structure but also to match the existing stone work on the building, Mountain Valley Quartzitic sandstone was selected to replace damaged stone accent elements and create new accent and landscape elements. Because of the dense and durable nature of the stone, Mountain Valley stone was able to deliver the match to the original stone, some of which was able to be salvaged and reused from the original structure, as well as a promise to perform well for the decades or centuries to come. This stone was also used extensively throughout the new underground parking structure.
Construction for the project took approximately 4 years and 8 months. The building was dedicated on March 20, 2016. Because of the herculean efforts of the design, construction and fabrication teams the integrity of this beloved historic landmark has been preserved and future generations will be able to use and appreciate this great structure.
2018 Pinnacle Award Winner