After Overcoming Many Obstacles, Howard County Mosque Soon to Open

January 25, 2006

Source: The Washington Post

On January 25, 2006 The Washington Post reported, "After nearly a decade of zoning battles, massive fundraising efforts and fervent prayers, the multimillion-dollar mosque for Howard County's burgeoning Muslim community is nearing completion. The 24,000-square-foot building sits on nearly seven wooded acres on Route 108 in Ellicott City. The exterior framework, painted cream with green accents, has been erected. Mosque President Sayed Hassan said that some of the interior work remains, including plumbing, electricity, insulation and painting, and that he expects the building to open in March or April... The mosque's opening will be a landmark for the county's Muslim population, a sign of its increasing numbers and influence. It will also be a first for Howard, a once-rural area that has become a destination for immigrants drawn by low crime and good schools... The mosque will be named Dar Al-Taqwa, Arabic for 'the house of righteousness,' and is designed to hold nearly 1,000 people. Howard is not the only county in the Washington area to experience such a boom in its Muslim population... According to Islamic organizations, about 300,000 Muslims live in the region that stretches from Richmond to Baltimore. A 2003 study by the American Communities Project, a Brown University report on population trends, shows that the number of suburban residents in the Washington region who claimed ancestry from a mostly Muslim country jumped 81 percent, from 54,295 in 1990 to 98,084 in 2000."

See also: Islam, Statistics, Zoning