‘Nan Tien Bridge’ at Unanderra to be officially opened this month

It’s being billed as an event 17 years in the making.

The pedestrian bridge connecting the Nan Tien Temple with the Nan Tien Institute will be officially opened later this month. 

Construction of the 200m ‘Nan Tien Bridge’ was completed on Wednesday. 

The pedestrian bridge is part of an $18 million project to link the Nan Tien Temple on one side of the motorway with the Nan Tien Institute on the other side.

According to Reverend Zhi Ren Shih from the Nan Tien Temple, the bridge is the realisation of 17 years of “imagining, design and development”. 

Reverend Zhi Ren Shih said the vision could not have materialised without the “compassionate and wise leadership” of the Venerable Master Hsing Yun, founder of Fo Guang Shan Buddhist Order, the Nan Tien Temple and NTI.

The support of devotees and the general public was also acknowledged. 

“The bridge symbolises the exchange of culture between East and West, integration of tradition and modernity, joint ownership of the Sangha and the laity, and equal emphasis on wisdom and practice,” Reverend Zhi Ren Shih said. 

“Various members of the government will be present (for the opening) along with some rather significant leaders of the Buddhist Order from China.”

The bridge symbolises the exchange of culture between East and West...

Reverend Zhi Ren Shih

The official opening is on Saturday, July 28 at 10.30am. 

The free community event will be open to the public. 

The pedestrian bridge is privately funded and both it and buildings at the institute were designed by architects Woods Bagot.

In 2014 project director Georgia Singleton said the bridge would represent “the enlightened journey of learning”.

“The bridge is more than a bridge and the building more than a building,” Ms Singleton said.

“The philosophy around the design sets it apart from everything else.”

The Nan Tien Institute began operating within the grounds of the Buddhist temple in 2011.

The institute moved across the motorway into its own building in March 2015.