Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Updated map of potential new temple sites

View Potential New Temples in a larger map

Possible future LDS temple sites provided in the above map were predicted by examining several factors which often contribute to the decision by the First Presidency to construct of an LDS temple, namely:

1. Number of potential stakes and districts served
2. Distance from the nearest LDS temple
3. Temple attendance and member activity rates
4. Perceived rates of future LDS Church growth
5. The duration of an LDS presence and local sustainability
6. Capacity and utilization of the nearest LDS temple
7. Political stability and socioeconomic conditions

Each of these seven points are reviewed below. The first three points are the primary factors in the decision to build a temple whereas the last four points are secondary factors. Revelation is the ultimate factor determining whether a temple is announced.

1. Number of potential stakes and districts served

The numerical size of LDS membership and number of LDS congregations, stakes, and districts in a given area is one of the strongest predictors of where new LDS temples are constructed. Currently the average LDS temple services 22 stakes and five districts. 43 LDS temples service nine or fewer stakes and 14 LDS temples service 50 or more stakes indicating that nearly 60% of LDS temples have between 10 and 49 stakes in their respective temple districts. LDS temples are almost always constructed in cities which have multiple stakes.

2. Distance from the nearest LDS temple

LDS Church President Thomas S. Monson has iterated in recent General Conference addresses that the Church has focused on constructing temples closer and closer to its members. Mileage is not the only factor in ascertaining distance as a predicting factor for new temple announcements. Travel times and accessibility are also important variables taken into account for determining where new temples are built. Mode of transportation and the crossing of international boundaries are additional factors which fall under the distance variable.

3. Temple attendance and member activity rates

Church leaders have stressed that the Church will not build additional temples to stand empty. The number of temple recommend holders and active temple-going Latter-day Saints in a given area are heavily taken into account for constructing additional temples. Many nations which overall have low member activity rates and very few endowed members often experience significant delays in the construction of temples notwithstanding a sizable LDS population.

4. Perceived rates of future LDS Church growth

Decisions to construct some LDS temples appear to be partially motivated by forecasts for future LDS Church growth. Some predicted future LDS temple sites have taken future church growth trends into account.

5. The duration of an LDS presence and local sustainability

Some LDS temples have been built in older LDS communities notwithstanding few LDS members if additional factors favor the construction of an LDS temple in a given location such as distance and member activity. The duration of an LDS presence has contributed to the construction of some temples in North America and Western Europe where LDS stakes have operated for 50 years or more.

6. Capacity and utilization of the nearest LDS temple

The physical size of the temple building and its capacity to serve patrons has contributed to the construction of temples often in areas where temples are heavily utilized. Once a temple reaches capacity as defined by being unable to schedule additional endowment sessions and other ordinance work for temple-going members, another temple within the temple district may be constructed and often in a location which reduces travel times and has a large enough body of temple-attending members to merit the construction of a temple.

7. Political stability and socioeconomic conditions

Nations which experience the greatest stability and highest standards of living are often more likely to have LDS temples constructed than in nations which are politically unstable and have low living standards. Consequently wealthier and more stable nations with comparatively few Latter-day Saints and moderate activity rates often have one or several LDS temples whereas some poorer and less stable nations with moderate or high activity rates have no LDS temples despite the same number of total members.


Craig said...

I fully agree with Matt that revelation is the ultimate factor. However I am also sure that studying things in our minds precedes revelation to President Monson as it does for all us.

TITHING FAITHFULNESS. I suspect that tithing faithfulness may be a factor under Matt's factors 3 (member activity rates)and 7 (political stability and socioeconomic conditions).

TEMPLES AND SPECIAL PROJECTS DEPARTMENT CAPACITY and timing of new and major remodeling of temples to minimize cost might be an 8th factor.

1. Teams of employees, contractors, and archtitects are put together for each project. For for each new temple, T&SP might use a headquarters project manager, a Salt Lake architect, a local or U.S. general contractor, and perhaps an on-site employee engineer and/or a contract management firm.

With so many projects in planning or announced, I suspect that temples in some areas are done in groups to reduce overhead and increse competition between teams to get the best quality, cost and timeliness. Contrators can compete in time, quality and cost, and share best practices in nearby projects. Key employees from headquarters can visit several in-process temples on the same trip.

For example temples 2 to 10 in Mexico; Accra Ghana and Aba Nigeria; Oquirrh Mountain and Draper Utah; Rexburg and Twin Falls Idaho; Gilbert and Phoenix Arizona; San Salvador, Quetzaltenango, and Tegucigalpa; Rome and Lisbon; Trujillo Peru, Concepcion Chile; and Cordoba Argentina.

2. Or local contractors that have been trained in one temple might follow up and bid to build another one in the same country.

Examples: A contractor who built Vancouver, might bid on Calgary and Winnipeg and built them at lower cost and in less time. The contractor who built Cebu, might bid on Urdanetta. A contractor who builds Fortaleza might later bid on future temples in cities like Brasilia and Rio de Janeiro. Perhaps a U.S. or European project manager could be sent to Africa to build temples in Nairobi Kenya and Kinshasa Democratic Republic of the Congo at the same time.

Matt said...

Grouping temple announcements in order to facilitate construction is a minor factor which I have overlooked. Thanks for the feedback and analysis.

Tithing faithfulness would fall under the third factor as it is an indicator of member activity.

soc. man I am ---------------- said...

President Hinkley said that temple attendance is the number one factor in determining where a temple is built. An area may have less members than another but if those members are more faithful in temple attendance then a temple is more apt to be built closer to them.

Matt said...

I remember with your lat potential temples list you also had them ranked in which you believed were most likely. What do you feel are maybe the top ten possibilities in the US and top ten internationally?

Robert said...

I'm curious when in Church history the Church abandoned volunteer membership labor for temple construction and began contracting nonmember (gentile) labor? Do you think perhaps it had anything to do with the rise of standardized state building codes and labor unions?

chris jones said...

it could have to do with building codes,local laws about construction safety in using licensed and trained workers and as you said building codes and labor unions. also temples are held to a higher standard than other buildings and I feel a more professional job must be done. There is still a lot of volunteer work that is done on temples in preparation for dedication. Other ideas are that there is more demand on members meeting family needs at work in other jobs. Missionary work is more focused on searching for and retaining new members in additional to humanitarian work. (There were several missions a few decades ago especially in the Pacific that were once building missions).

coachodeeps said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
coachodeeps said...

I will jump out and say based on the factors listed and from the list/map of potential temples here is my list of coming temple announcements:

1) Rogers Arkansas (may be in Joplin Missouri instead)
2) Puebla Mexico
3) Rio De Janiero Brazil
4) Kinshasa DR of Congo

Although, it would be great to see one in Singapore, I think it is still a few years away when there are more stakes in the Singapore/Malaysia area.

What does everyone else think the next 3-5 temples might be?

coachodeeps said...

I will through in the Quito Ecuador and Arequipa Peru sites as well, with the number of stakes and the Trujillo Peru temple announced, it is logical to build these at the same time, as pointed out by Craig.

Although I speculate, I know it is revelation to our Prophet that is the ultimate factor.

Matt said...


I'm not sure when the Church began contracting labor for building temples, but I would imagine that this began in the 1970s.


Based on how the three temples announced in the last General Conference - Fort Collins, CO; Meridian, ID; and Winnepeg, Manitoba - were ones that I believe took almost everyone by surprise, I do no know if we can make accurate guesses on which temples will be most likely to be announced this coming General Conference. However based on the information that I have, I believe that the following sites appear the most likely for upcoming temple announcements before 2015:

Arequipa, Peru
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Managua, Nicaragua
Pocatello, Idaho
Puebla, Mexico
Kinshasa, DR Congo
Layton, Utah
Cedar City, Utah

Sean said...

Under the possible Colorado Springs Temple you have listed a Falcon Colorado Stake. I think you mean Fountain Colorado Stake. Falcon, Colorado is in the CS East Stake.

With the following number of wards

Colorado Springs Stake 8
Colorado Springs East Stake 11 + 1 branch
Colorado Springs North Stake 11
Fountain Stake 9

for a total of 40 units, they could make at least one more stake in Colorado Springs.

Matt said...


Thanks for the correction. I currently live in Colorado Springs and I imagine that in the next couple a years a new stake will be created from the Colorado Springs North and Colorado Springs East Stakes.

brycen said...

It seems you have to have a very fast internet connection to load this map - I have been completely unable to do so. I wonder if you could post the list of potential temple locations separately from the map?

Matt said...

Rio De Janiero Brazil Temple
Brasilia Brazil Temple
Salvador Brazil Temple
Arequipa Peru Temple
Puebla Mexico Temple
Kinshasa Democratic Republic of Congo Temple
Managua Nicaragua Temple
Edinburgh Scotland Temple
Tarawa Kiribati Temple
San Juan Puerto Rico Temple
Mendoza Argentina Temple
Bahía Blanca/Neuquén Argentina Temple
Cayagan de Oro Philippines Temple
Cuautla México Temple
Belem Brazil Temple
Layton Utah Temple
Price Utah Temple
Evanston Wyoming Temple
Tucson Arizona Temple
Cedar City Utah Temple
Jacksonville Florida Temple
Singapore Temple
Belo Horizonte Brazil Temple
Virginia Beach/Richmond Temple
Colorado Springs Temple
Pocatello Idaho Temple
Charlotte North Carolina Stake
Rogers Arkansas Temple
Cleveland Ohio Temple
Culiacan Mexico Temple
San Pedro Sula Honduras Temple
Quito Ecuador Temple
Montpelier Idaho Temple
Eugene Oregon Temple
Bakersville California Temple

A Meyer said...

Meridian, ID was a total shock, especially when we were recently told by local leaders that if worthy members in the area would attend just once a month, the temple would be packed. That being said, the evenings were quite full as I had been bumped 2 sessions one night and it was our ward's night. So needless to say, we were excited about a new temple.
Then came the announcemnet of a Boise renovation that we thought wouldn't take place til the Meridian temple opened. However, we are all still speculating where the temple will be located.

I do drive by Pocatello a lot and I have always wondered why they don't have a temple (even though IF is only 45 min away).

Alex said...

I am apparently in the minority, as I called the Meridian area as a potential (but not the most likely) temple site. The reasons were what was listed. The 30 stakes around Boise were packing the temple and otherwise being faithful, & growth was expected to continue. Were Kinshasaa safer, it would fit these criteria, too. Matt, any idea on how safety, & maybe anti-American sentiment, there & other places affects temple placement?

Diogo said...

As far as Brazil is concerned, I personally think that Belo Horizonte will come before Rio de Janeiro considering geographical issues. The reasons for this are:

Rio is only 4 hours away from Sao Paulo and 5 from Campinas, and similar distance to Belo Horizonte.

Belo Horizonte is equidistant to the Cariacica, Vitoria and Vila Velha stakes and closer to many more districts than it says on the map.

Belo Horizonte is central, and would decrease the travel time to the temple from Brasilia from 14 hours to 8 hours.

Those cities in Brazilian South-east are all currently part of the Campinas Temple District, and having something more central would have the heavier impact overall.

Ben H said...

The Evanston, Wyoming temple could also include the Coalville, Utah and Kamas, Utah stakes.

I have a couple more possibilities for you...

Missoula Montana Temple...Stakes: Butte, Montana, Great Falls Montana, Great Falls, Montana East, Helena, Montana, Kalispell, Montana, Missoula, Montana and Stevensville, Montana.

Austin Texas Temple...Stakes: Austin, Texas, Austin, Texas Oak Hills, Killeen, Texas, Kyle, Texas, Round Rock, Texas and Waco, Texas

Ozark Bubba said...

All state surrounding Arkansas have LDS temples. Some of them have more than one temple. We are in the Oklahoma City Temple district but prefer attending Kansas City, St. Louis,Memphis, or Dallas Temples because the travel is less confusing. OKC Temple is actually west of OKC making it 4.5 hours driving time.

Unknown said...


When I suggest I have been studying a map of the US, I don't mean to your level of study...

If you have a more recently published list, I am sorry, I missed it in looking around.

However, given thoughts about potential relocation of family, and looking around (my level of study) and comparing my CONUS list against yours (above) I wonder what you think about, or why you did not list the following locations -

Knoxville, TN;
Wichita, KS;
Fl panhandle (Pensacola, Panama City, Tallahassee);
Pittsburg, PA:
Rapid City, SD.

I note you have listed/written about Rogers, Ark., and can see why that or Fayetteville would ease travel, for those situated between StL, KC, Memphis and OKC.

I see the same for one in Wichita, which has two robust stakes in the area, and easing travel for those caught with long hauls between OKC, KC and Denver.

Rapid City, SD, seems to have several more units in the area than Bismark, ND, which has a temple, and which when built was to provide for a vast but sparsely populated area, so in an era when the Church is starting to add smaller, by-appointment temples geographically to substantially cut down travel time hurdles.

Knoxville,TN is 3, to 3.5 hours from Nashville or Atlanta, respectively, and due to lack of interstates, further from either Louisville or North Carolina's temple.

My friends in the FL panhandle travel to Baton Rouge or Birmingham, AL to visit a temple. A temple in Jacksonville (with 2 hours of Orlando) is easily supportable by numbers of Saints there, but is still further (100m)from Pensacola areas than Baton Rouge.

Austin (80m from San Antonio) and Colorado Springs (1 hour from Denver) both have growing and robust populations that could each support a temple, but if immediate population of units/Melchizedek Priesthood members is not the top priority, where distance might trump, I see NE Ark, SoDakota, Wichita, FL panhandle and Knoxville, and possibly Pittsburgh, PA, as potentially being more likely to be blessed with temples sooner?

Am interested in your more expert/studied guesstimates. Thanks.