On the night of Jan. 29, 2017, members of the Centre Culturel Islamique Québec gathered inside Quebec City’s largest mosque for the most important prayer of the day. At just around 7:50 p.m., a gunman entered and immediately opened fire, tragically killing six men and wounding 19 people. “There was a world before January 29,” said Ramzi Khemiri, a former mosque administrator, “and there is a world after.”
Nearly three years after the deadly shooting, renovations are underway for the mosque which will reopen in June. Estimated at $1.2 million, the remodel will make the building safer and create more space for its growing number of worshippers. According to Kamel Kheroua, an architectural adviser on the project, the mosque formerly looked like a nondescript commercial building but the remodel is designed to upgrade the aesthetics and make it look more “classic and modern.”
“It is comforting — after everything we went through — we need to have some happy moments,” says Mohamed Labidi, the mosque’s former president.
For more on this: How do survivors of the Quebec mosque shooting find hope?