Source: The Argus
On August 23, 2005 The Argus reported, "Though the prayer room [of the Islamic Society of the East Bay] meets Islamic requirements for modesty, faces Mecca and is devoid of pictures, the crowds of people sitting wall to wall during Friday prayers are an indication that its 1,000 or so members gradually are outgrowing their facilities. Sometime in the future, society officials plan to build a $3 million, 16,000-square-foot mosque with a prominent dome structure to accommodate more than 1,000 people for major festivals and holidays. But first they have to build a 13,000-square-foot, $2 million school, women's prayer area, funeral home and multimedia library, as well as an expanded parking lot to share with St. Paul's United Methodist Church. Since construction began two years ago, the physical improvements have inched forward at a snail's pace, society leaders say, because Islamic law severely limits the practice of charging or paying interest... Prohibited from using conventional mortgages and loans, leaders have looked for alternative ways to finance massive construction projects... Construction manager Shakeel Ahmed said the society has generated roughly 50 percent of the funds needed to complete the $2 million project."