A giant statue of the Hindu deity Shiva will be allowed on the property of Omkaar Temple in Lake Township after the Allen County Board of Zoning Appeals today unanimously approved a variance for the object.
The statue required the variance because it was ruled a sign by the Department of Planning Services and exceeded size requirements for signs in agriculturally zoned areas.
Agricultural zoning in Allen County limits signs to 8 feet tall and a maximum area of 50 square feet.
The statue is 17 feet tall and will sit on a 6-foot concrete base, Fort Wayne attorney Al Hofer told the zoning board. Hofer said previous information that the statue was 27 feet tall was an error.
In response to letters from neighbors concerned about additional lighting in the rural neighborhood, temple representative Dr. Subhash Reddy, a Fort Wayne cardiologist, said lights illuminating the statue would be on a timer and be on only 6 to 8 p.m.
The lights would not be on during times of the year when it's still light at that time, he added.