Governor Rick Perry and Plano’s Mayor Pat Evans officially opened the Ismaili Jamatkhana in Plano, Texas, on August 30, 2006.
The 30,000 square feet Jamatkhana sits on 8.5 acres and backs into a park. The geometric design throughout the building is based on an octagon. A series of interconnected octagonal rings begins at the front of the building, continues through its lobby and ends at the social courtyard on the other side of the building. This series of rings provides the axis, on either side of which, the two wings of the building are equally divided and balanced, denoting an equal balance between the spiritual and temporal dimensions of life.
For those Ismailis who have lived in the area for the past few decades, this Jamatkhana represents a sense of permanence as they make North Texas their home. It is a place where they will come for contemplation and worship, where their children can learn about their faith; it is a place where community identity and traditions can be maintained while forging relationships with neighboring communities.
The Jamatkhana welcomes visitors with a front fountain and contains a social courtyard that has been divided into four by a central fountain depicting the charbagh, resonating a traditional Persian design, and which may be interpreted as representing an Islamic understanding of Paradise. Following her tour, Plano’s Mayor Evans remarked: “The building surpasses my expectations and I am sure anyone visiting it will leave with a greater appreciation of the tranquility palpable within its walls and the serenity one senses in the courtyard and gardens.”