The BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir Atlanta is the sixth BAPS traditional Hindu stone temple built outside India. It is also the largest Hindu temple of its kind outside of India. It is currently open to the public.
The 32,000-square-foot (3,000 m2) temple, officially called the Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, sits on 30 acres (120,000 m2). With hand-carved stone spires that tower 75 feet (23 m), it is the tallest building in Lilburn, Georgia, dominating the intersection of Rockbridge Road and Lawrenceville Highway. More than 1,300 craftsmen and 900 volunteers dedicated their time in putting this 34,450-piece stone building together. More than 4,500 tons of ItalianCarrara marble, 4,300 tons of Turkishlimestone, and 3,500 tons of Indianpink sandstone was quarried and shipped to the craftsmen in India. Then, all of the nearly 35,000 pieces were shipped to the United States. It serves members of the Swaminarayan branch of Hinduism, which originated in India more than 200 years ago. The traditional design features custom-carved stonework, a wraparound veranda and five prominent pinnacles reminiscent of the Himalayan hills.
The Lilburn location is the largest temple in North America for BAPS which was built at an estimated cost of $19 million, the temple complex (Atlanta based Newport Design Group served as Lead Consulting Architects) is only the third of its kind in the country, surpassing BAPS temples in Houston and Chicago. It also surpassed the BAPS temple in Toronto, Canada to become the largest Hindu temple outside India.
The organization’s current spiritual Guru, Pramukh Swami Maharaj, came to Lilburn in 2004 and blessed the first foundation stones. Upon completion, a keystone weighing more than 2 tons was twisted into place on the ceiling of the central dome inside.