BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Sanstha Mandir - Bartlett, Illinois

The BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Sanstha Mandir in the Chicago suburb of Bartlett is not just a mouthful, but also an eyeful with its traditional Indian design and marble construction.

In fact the innocuous worship site is not only made in a traditional Indian style of construction but it is actually built to the ancient specifications laid out in the Hindu text on temple design, the Shilpa Shastras. The ornate marble and limestone complex was remarkably constructed in just 16 months by a supernaturally dedicated group of 1,700 volunteers, using no steel support in the entire building. The speedy construction feat was achieved by quarrying the stone from such disparate countries as Turkey and Italy, then shipping the raw rocks to India for carving. The delicate and ornate stonework was then carved in India for 22 months prior to being shipped out to Bartlett where the pieces were put together like the most expensive Lego set of all time.

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