Posted on October 6, 2004

Little Rock Officials Approve Zoning for Islamic Community

Fox 16 (Little Rock), Oct. 6

The Little Rock City Board of Directors approved plans to set aside land for an Islamic community. This despite strong opposition from residents who believe this type of community promotes segregation. Although members of the Islamic community got approval for their plans from the City Board of Directors they still did not win over some residents.

Members of the Islamic Center, a branch of the Nation of Islam got a chance to present their case for building an Islamic community to the city Board of Directors earlier Tuesday night. The group wants to build a community that contains a mosque, a school and 22 homes. However residents in the area along 40th and Potter voiced concerns over this being a segregated community.

Islamic Community Center members say their community is open to anyone, not just those who share their faith. They say they not only welcome other faiths they encourage it.

After hearing the Islamic Center’s proposal and concerns of citizens, the board voted to approve rezoning of the land allowing the center to be built. That did not satisfy some residents, who believe you can’t count on the plans for the center to stay the same.

While the Islamic members say they hope to gain the support of the community and their project will go on as scheduled. They plan to start building in January.

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