The Mormon Church has bought a multi-million dollar Manukau site for its new temple beside the Southern Motorway between two other Mormon properties.

Russell Nelson, president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, announced that a site on Redoubt Rd had been purchased.

"I am pleased to announce that the new temple will be built in Auckland on Redoubt Rd," he said, referring to a hill near the church's existing missionary training centre at 19 Redoubt Rd and its Redoubt stake centre.

The property at 19 Redoubt Rd is listed as being worth $27m on Auckland Council's web site: $14.35m in buildings and $13.3m land.

The Roman Mormon temple, dedicated this year. Photo/supplied
The Roman Mormon temple, dedicated this year. Photo/supplied

The temple will be a two-storey building with a granite exterior and Nelson indicated it would be highly visible and prominent.

It could have similarities to a new Italian temple opening early next year, although no specifics about the New Zealand project have been released.

Richard Hunter, the church's public affairs Pacific area director, sent images of the new Italian project although he stressed that was not necessarily what was planned in Auckland.

But the images could give people an idea of the local project.

"You'd get a feel for what is coming to Auckland," Hunter said of the new Roman temple, which opened early this year and was formally dedicated in early March.

The Hamilton Mormon temple. Photo/Greg Bowker
The Hamilton Mormon temple. Photo/Greg Bowker

But he emphasised no specific design or location had yet been decided on for New Zealand's second Mormon temple.

New Zealand's only Mormon temple is in Hamilton, built in 1958 but shut a few months ago for renovations, with the church saying it would be shut for three years till 2021. That is resulting in some Mormon couples going to Australia for weddings.

Hunter said Auckland plans remained under wraps.


"It's still early days in the process. Temples around the world have different designs," he said, showing examples from Japan, Boston, Salt Lake City and Hawaii.

A South Auckland site was always expected by those close to the church, due to that number of worshipers living there and having close links with the Pacific Islands, as well as a plentiful supply of flat land than western or northern areas.

In October last year, church president and American Russell Nelson announced plans to build 12 new temples, the largest announced on the same day in the church's history.

The total number of Mormon temples operating, announced or under construction is 201, the church said.

The Mormon's new temple in Rome. Photo/supplied
The Mormon's new temple in Rome. Photo/supplied

A statement from the Mormons said that came 18 years to the week since the church completed its 100th temple.

The new temples announced from Utah in October were Auckland, Mendoza in Argentina, Salvador in Brazil, Yuba City in California, Phnom Penh in Cambodia, Praia at Cape Verde, Yigo in Guam, Puebla in Mexico, Lagos in Nigeria, Davao in the Philippines, San Juan in Puerto Rico and Washington County in Utah.

"The Auckland New Zealand temple will be the country's second Latter-day Saint temple. The first temple, built in 1958 in Hamilton, closed in August 2018 for renovations. The Church has had a presence in New Zealand since the 1850s. Today, more than 114,000 Latter-day Saints live in the country," the church said in October last year.

The Mormons have 226 congregations in New Zealand of which 88 are in Auckland. The church has 34,662 members in those 88 Auckland congregations, Hunter said.