A Muslim congregation in suburban Philadelphia has filed a federal suit against Bensalem, claiming the township has violated its constitutional rights by denying them permission to build a mosque.
The congregation, the Bensalem Masjid, is comprised of about 200 families who have worshiped for six years in a rented firehall on Bensalem Boulevard. During that time, they have sought to build a mosque on a 4.5 acre parcel leased to the Masjid on the 3800 block of Hulmeville Road, a corridor which is already home to four houses of worship. According to the suit, the congregation repeatedly has been rebuffed in their attempts to get a zoning variance to build a 17,000-square-foot structure with 154 parking spaces.
Bensalem officials could not immediately be reached for comment.