A Hindu temple is being built on the site of a demolished housing association depot on Copsterhill Road.
Shree Swaminarayan Temple appointed Salford Quays-based contractor Recom Solutions earlier this year to deliver the scheme in Oldham, which it aims to complete by 2022.
Site clearance has begun and will be followed by ground works, structural steel works, glass-reinforced concrete works and then internal fit-out.
Once complete, the Shree Swaminarayan Temple will feature a spacious and modern prayer hall, space for sports, events and teaching, a courtyard with landscaped gardens, parking and accommodation.
The current Shree Swaminarayan Temple, on Lee Street in Oldham, opened in 1977, and the community has sought a modern facility for years. Planning permission for the new temple was granted last June and funding was secured through donations from the local community, as well as national and global supporters.
An ornate solid marble gate and traditional Hindu temple domes are to be handcrafted in India, imported and installed at the new facility, under the plans.
The scheme has been designed by LTS Architects, while Curtins was the planning consultant and Hurstwood Environmental Consulting also worked on the scheme.
Around 100 members of the community, including senior temple leaders, as well as design team personnel and contractors attended a groundbreaking ceremony to bless the site before construction work commences.
Suresh Gorasia, spokesperson for Shree Swaminarayan Temple, said: “The temple lies at the heart of our community. For many, it is an extension of their home, a place for worship, culture, socialising and recreation.
“Our priority is to create a new temple that is outstanding, blending contemporary design with traditional Hindu temple features to ensure it becomes a landmark building. We are thrilled now to reach this milestone of starting on site.”
Jason McKnight, director at Recom, added: “We feel honoured to be given the opportunity to work on this prestigious and ornate scheme, where we can demonstrate to the North West market our expertise in specialist construction delivery.”