Buddhist Institute proposing monastery for 1,400 nuns in eastern P.E.I.

The Great Wisdom Buddhist Institute (GWBI) is hoping to build a vast monastery complex on their property in Brudenell, P.E.I.

The Great Wisdom Buddhist Institute wants to build a complex spanning 121 hectares, or 300 acres in Brudenell

A new monastery is planned for eastern P.E.I. The Great Wisdom Buddhist Institute already has had this facility on Uigg Road since 2012. Construction on the new complex would begin this year. (Laura Meader/CBC)

The Great Wisdom Buddhist Institute (GWBI) is hoping to build a vast monastery complex on their property in Brudenell, P.E.I.

The institute has released a master plan available on the province's website, outlining a 10 year, multi-million dollar project proposal for a multi-building complex.

It's part of the growing Buddhist population in the eastern part of P.E.I. GWBI has had a facility on Uigg Road since 2012. 

200,000 sq. ft. 

The plan states the monastery would have space for 1,400 nuns but the actual population of the complex would depend on enrolment. 

The grounds would span more than 121 hectares, or 300 acres north and south of Brudenell Road in Kings County, with four main building clusters on the north side of the road, and two buildings on the south side.

The Great Wisdom Buddhist Institute is proposing a vast complex in Brudenell, P.E.I. that would serve as a teaching facility for up to 1,400 nuns. (Great Wisdom Buddhist Institute)

Included in the plans are teaching facilities, lecture halls, worship areas, dormitories and recreation facilities, that will cover an area of 200,000 sq. ft.

The grounds would also include gardens, a greenhouse and both private and public walking trails. 

There would also be a parking lot built with 300 spaces and an additional 15 spaces for buses and RV's.

Majority of residents without vehicles

In the plan, GWBI said it plans to have its own independent sewage system and that it's set aside 10 acres for that purpose. 

It also addressed traffic concerns for the area, citing that the majority of residents at the monastery would be without vehicles.

People who own properties nearby are located at least 450 metres from the closest new building on the complex.

Changes needed to zoning bylaws

The institute states in the plan it's already met with government officials to outline the project and met with surrounding residents to address potential concerns. 

Construction would be completed in five phases, with one of the halls planned for this year.

Construction for the monastery would take place in five phases over the next 10 years. GWBI estimates it will be a multi-million dollar project. Building complexes will be located north and south of Brudenell Road. (Great Wisdom Buddhist Institute)

But the plan also says town council would need to change zoning bylaws to allow this type of complex.

A community open house is scheduled for June 7 to discuss the environmental planning strategy for construction of the monastery.

The proposal has yet to receive approval. ​

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