South Haven Remembrance Centre

Edmonton, Alberta


Monument wrapped in charred Accoya wood

The South Haven Centre for Remembrance is a monument located in the city of Edmonton in Alberta, Canada.  Designed by Vancouver-based Shape Architecture, this project features a symbolic 13 meter tall tower which emerges from the prairie landscape, reflecting the existing grave sites, monuments, and “the latent memory that they embody,” says Dwayne Smythe, Partner, Shape Architecture.

The design inspiration was to memorialise moments in time and capture the quality of the seasons through the interplay of light, shadow and darkness.

The colour and overall character of the building considers the relationship of changing light patterns within the building interiors throughout the seasons as well as the long crisp winter shadows that are cast from the building edges. The combination of black hot rolled steel panels and black charred (shou-sugi-ban Accoya wood) skin act as a counterpoint to the snowy winter conditions and the changing relationship of the building in the landscape throughout the year.

In the winter, the charred Accoya wood protects the exterior with its water resistant features and resilience to harsh winter weather.  In the summer, the building’s skin corresponds to the granite tombstones which surround it.

The South Haven Centre for Remembrance was awarded the Governor General’s Medal in Architecture for 2020.

Architect: Shape Architecture Inc. / PECHET Studio

Photography: Ema Peter Photography 

Accoya wood cladding provided by Accoya Manufacturer, Delta Millworks 

Applications used in this project:Cladding Cladding

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