Ground Zero Mosque Clears Hurdle

Panel rules old store not a historic landmark
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 3, 2010 10:39 AM CDT
Traffic passes the former Burlington Coat Factory store that is to be torn down to build the new Mosque near Ground Zero in New York.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

(Newser) – New York’s Landmarks Preservation Commission paved the way for the “Ground Zero mosque” today, voting 9-0 that the building not be landmarked, and clearing the way for the structure to be torn down to make way for the mosque. The 152-year-old building, which once housed a Burlington Coat Factory store, was not a protected landmark. Protesters heckled the commission after the vote, the New York Post reports.

More opposition to the Islamic community center has come out of the woodwork recently, with the Anti-Defamation League, a Jewish rights group, joining the parties against it. “This is not a question of rights, but of what is right,” the ADL said, arguing that the building will “cause some victims more pain unnecessarily.” But the Landmarks Preservation Commission stressed that its decision had nothing to do with the community center, only the abandoned store’s cultural or aesthetic value. (Read more Ground Zero mosque stories.)

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