Construction begins on $60m religious attraction

Construction has begun on the Faith and Liberty Discovery Center, a $60 million attraction in the Independence Mall, Philadelphia.

The center is set to open in 2020, and it is hoped to draw 250,000 visitors annually.

The Faith and Liberty Discovery Center will feature technology to teach visitors more about the Bible. The immersive experience is being led by Local Projects, the company behind the 9/11 Memorial & Museum in New York. Architectural design will be provided by JacobsWyper Architects’ SaylorGregg Studio.

American Bible Society President and CEO, Roy Peterson, said: “This will be an exciting experience for people of all faiths and backgrounds. We want the Faith and Liberty Discovery Center to be a place that unites people, shows how faith has always played a role in our nation, and helps visitors consider what difference faith can make in our lives today.”

The Faith and Liberty Discovery Center will feature a 9,000-square foot glass lobby that will extend toward Independence Mall. The landmark will be a 2-story iconic sculpture of three intertwined surfaces representing the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and the Bible.

The Faith and Liberty Discovery Center will be 40,000-square feet, featuring an innovation and education center, five galleries and a 3D immersive theater.

Jake Barton, principal of Local Projects, said: “These are powerful stories that will be told using technology people have never seen. From the religious tolerance of early Philadelphia to Martin Luther King’s leadership in the Civil Rights movement, visitors will not just witness history, they’ll participate in it.”