Riaz Khan with his wife, Ayesha Khan. (Kevin Clark / Herald file)

Riaz Khan with his wife, Ayesha Khan. (Kevin Clark / Herald file)

Purchase Photo

Groundbreaking for Mukilteo’s first mosque is Saturday

The proposed Islamic Center of Mukilteo was the target of an anti-mosque mailer campaign in 2016.

MUKILTEO — It’s Riaz Khan’s field of dreams.

And finally, after seven years of planning, and a short-lived Islamophobic campaign against it, there will be shovels.

The groundbreaking of the Islamic Center of Mukilteo is 11 a.m. Saturday at 3920 Harbour Pointe Blvd. SW.

“This is close to my heart,” Khan said. “It’s a dream project. It is the first mosque in Mukilteo.”

Khan, a Boeing engineer who was elected to the Mukilteo City Council in 2019, is president of the group spearheading the mosque. It started in 2014 with purchase of land off Mukilteo Speedway, between a Bank of America and Mukilteo City Hall. The project has been approved by the city.

The opening date of the mosque depends on funding.

“The time frame is one to two years,” Khan said. “We are still raising money. We have a contractor.”

Other local mosques are in Everett, Lynnwood and Mountlake Terrace.

“This will help Mukilteo residents,” Khan said.

He aims for a membership of about 100 people.

The proposed 3,796-square-foot building will have an assembly and prayer area, multi-purpose room, offices, a kitchen, restrooms and two classrooms. Plans call for a parking lot with 26 spaces on the 33,000-square-foot lot.

Rendering of the Islamic Center of Mukilteo.

Rendering of the Islamic Center of Mukilteo.

“That’s about 100 people with a family of four,” Khan said. “About 100 people can pray. A lot of people come to the mosque, mostly on Friday for afternoon prayer.”

Conceptual drawings show a minaret, a type of tower that provides a visual focal point. Often the tower is used for the Muslim call to prayer, but this one is simply an architectural feature. Planners do not intend to install loudspeakers or broadcast calls to prayer from the site.

The group has the support of Pointe of Grace Lutheran Church, where it now meets.

But the mosque has faced challenges.

In 2016 Peter Zieve, founder of aerospace firm Electroimpact Inc., was behind anonymous postcards asking residents to oppose the mosque. Zieve first denied knowing about it, then later admitted he was behind the mailing and that he regretted it.

A month later, flyers with the words “Ban Islam from America” were posted at the site of the planned mosque. A U.S. flag was placed nearby. The mosque’s sign was damaged.

Khan said there hasn’t been any blatant opposition since.

Mayor Jennifer Gregerson plans to attend Saturday’s groundbreaking.

“Over the years the proposal raised concerns from some members of the community and an openness and welcoming from many others,” Gregerson said.

“This is a step forward for their project and demonstrates that people of all faiths are welcome in Mukilteo.”

Andrea Brown: abrown@heraldnet.com; 425-339-3443. Twitter @reporterbrown.

Talk to us

More in Local News

Jesse L. Hartman (Everett Police Department)
Suspect in fatal Everett shooting captured at U.S. border

Jesse Hartman was arrested in California as he tried to re-enter the country from Mexico.

The state House transportation budget proposes $15,000,000 to widen state improving Highway 524 between 24th Avenue West in Lynnwood and 9th Avenue SE.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Who wants a wider Highway 524 between Bothell and Lynnwood?

The project list includes expanding the three-mile, two-lane road between Bothell and Lynnwood.

People on jet skis and boats drive past the Hannah Marie, formerly called the Midas, that was run aground along the banks of the Snohomish River on Tuesday, July 3, 2018 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Everett couple writes check to clean up the Snohomish River

Phil and Kelly Johnson have donated $50,000 to the county project that removes derelict vessels.

FILE - This Monday, June 17, 2019, file photo shows 5-mg pills of Oxycodone. While the nation's attorneys general debate a legal settlement with Purdue Pharma, the opioid epidemic associated with the company's blockbuster painkiller OxyContin rages on. The drugs still kill tens of thousands of people each year with no end in sight. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File)
High court ruling spurs effort to retool state’s drug laws

Meanwhile, the Blake decision has gotten people out jail, charges dismissed and possibly clemency for some.

Gabriel van Winkle, center, struggles with lifting a bag of rice weighing nearly half his weight as he and volunteers help move the Granite Falls Food Bank from their old location to a new one on Tuesday, April 6, 2021 in Granite Falls, Washington.  (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
New digs will give Granite Falls nonprofit room to grow

The small town’s community coalition and food bank have found a home on school district grounds.

NO CAPTION NECESSARY: Logo for the Cornfield Report by Jerry Cornfield. 20200112
5 wrinkles for lawmakers to iron out in session’s last days

Here’s what’s happening on Day 92 of the 2021 session of the Washington Legislature.

Marysville police investigating gunshots that injured man

The Marysville man, 62, suffered a wound to his left knee and was treated at a hospital.

(Getty Images)
How to get vaccinated in Snohomish County

Availability of doses is always changing, so keep checking back.

Most Read