Shia Islamic Center Looks to Open in Elk Grove, Illinois

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SHAFAQNA- An Islamic organization has filed an application to open a religious center in Elk Grove Village’s business park, US state of Illinois.

Elk Grove Village trustees were considering a request at Tuesday’s (April 26) village board meeting to conduct a public hearing before the village’s plan commission. They were considering a request by Ali Yun Wali Allah Islamic Center, Inc., for a special use permit to open a religious institution at 1550 Higgins Rd., just west of where Higgins briefly merges with Oakton Street in the business park west of Busse Road.

Syed Shah is helping organize the effort to open the center. He said members of a Shia Muslim group, currently using a center near Lawrence Avenue and Pulaski Road in Chicago, want somewhere closer to where they live in the Northwest suburbs. If applications are approved, Shah said he hopes to begin holding meetings in July.

The center would not be a mosque where prayers and services would be held, but a place functioning similarly to a Bible study group where passages and stories from the Quran, Islam’s holy book, would be discussed, Shah said.

Regular meetings would take place between 8 and 10 p.m. Thursdays with attendance expected to average 10 to 20 people on a weekly basis and between 30 and 50 on religious holidays.

The motion village trustees are set to consider is very preliminary. If village trustees approve the request for a public hearing, the special use process would begin with a plan commission review. No date has been set for that review.

The village includes several religious organizations with facilities located in or near the business park, including churches and a Buddhist temple.

In an unrelated case, the US Justice Department filed a lawsuit in federal court against the city of Des Plaines last year after aldermen denied a zoning variation application by the American Islamic Center to open a place of worship in an industrial area. The case, in federal court, is still pending.

Source: Journal Online

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