Design and construction of a
Japanese Buddhist Temple at New England Peace Pagoda's site, the
religious center for Nipponzan Myohoji Buddhist Order in North
America. Inspired by fifth century Indian Buddhist architecture,
religious as well as functional needs of the order are incorporated
into the planning and building form.
The 10,000 SF three-story
monastery contains the main hall and living quarters for the monks and
nuns of the order as well as for visitors on retreat. The main hall
takes the form of an apsidal basilica, and the end apse houses an
altar called Gohonzon, which is master planned with the existing
Pagoda in accordance with the religious principles. The horseshoe
windows at the portico allow the natural illumination of the nave
during the daybreak praying and chanting. The Semi-circular entry
plaza is to act as occasional theatrical stage settings. The
reinforced concrete building is partially heated by the solar panels,
located along the southern façade sized to obtain maximum heat gain
with the natural contour of the site.
It is important that ecological as well as religious harmony be
sustained on this site. Locality of the project such as the building
code, accessibility and other environmental factors are equally
important as well. It is also important to note that this building is
mostly constructed by the volunteer laborers of different races,
nationalities and faiths from all over the world.