Great news from Mayapur. Here’s a few photos I took today. As you can see, some major changes are taking place. The park is being cleared in preparation for the ground work to begin on the Temple of the Vedic Planetarium (TOVP).

There is a good deal of nostalgia for the park, the famous Lotus Fountain, the lawns and trees and flowers. Literally tens of millions of visitors (four million just during last year) have enjoyed the peaceful environs of the ISKCON Mayapur Candrodaya Mandir gardens and they have served us well. Still I can’t help but be elated in seeing the acceleration of the demolition as preparations gear up.

By January we hope to see the pile drivers in place and work on the foundations begin in earnest. In early February the entire GBC body will attend an inaugural ceremony to create an auspicious beginning for the works. If you are coming for Gaura Purnima, be prepared for some major changes!

The park area circa 1976

The park area circa 1976

Lotus Fountain -- the beginning (circa 1980)

Lotus Fountain -- the beginning (circa 1980)

Lotus Fountain -- the beginning

Lotus Fountain -- the beginning

And the end... November 2009

And the end... November 2009

After nearly 30 years of service, the Lotus Fountain goes under the hammers

After nearly 30 years of service, the Lotus Fountain goes under the hammers

30 years and millions of visitors later, the Lotus Fountain bids adieu

30 years and millions of visitors later, the Lotus Fountain bids adieu

All things must pass

All things must pass

Here’s the new perimeter demarking the boundary of the TOVP. These poles will be adorned with tin sheets and the whole area will be off limits to visitors while the construction goes on.

TOVP perimeter fence poles go in

TOVP perimeter fence poles go in

Take a last look, by Gaura Purnima this will be a solid fence

Take a last look, by Gaura Purnima this will be a solid fence

One place I was particularly glad to see dismantled was this:

Govinda's dhaba bites the dust

Govinda's dhaba bites the dust

Going, going, Gone-vinda's

Going, going, ...

Gone-vindas -- will be replaced with an new first class air conditioned restaurant

A new first class restaurant is under construction and will be operational within two months. It will comprise of three areas-Bengali cuisine, Indian cuisine, and an air conditioned full service Italian restaurant. Another area will be for snacks and take-aways so that sit down diners will not be disturbed. There will be three kitchens with different crews cooking for each one.

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