UK architect Adjaye Associates has been selected to design the Martyrs Memorial in Niger, dedicated to those who lost their lives fighting terrorism along the country’s southern and western borders.
Designed as both a monument to the dead, and a documentation of Niger’s continuous fight against extremists, the 4,000 sq m project is located in the centre of Niger’s capital Niamey, and will contain 20m high pillars, flanked by a grid of trees.
The pillars symbolise the lives lost and act as a cooling mechanism by creating thermal chimneys that extract heat from the ground-level space.
At night, beams of light are projected from the pillars, suggesting a beacon of hope.
A plaza and multi-use civic space will be located below the monument, which is based on a raised triangular plot, overlooking the city.
The Martyr’s Memorial primary material is concrete, but bronze and steel are used to increase durability.
According to UK government resources, there has been six terrorist incidents in Niger in the last two years, with 216 killed.
The reason for the terrorist incidents is cited as a fight against Boko Haram and retaliations to Niger’s participation in France’s intervention in Mali.
A quote on Adjaye Associates’ website describes the project: "Through an interplay of absences and voids, the Martyrs Monument becomes a sacred space, an in-between moment for meaningful reflection on the past and a signalling for a peaceful future."
Images courtesy of Adjaye Associates