HRM unveils plans for memorial markers to commemorate Halifax Explosion
Published Thursday, August 24, 2017 8:34PM ADT
The Halifax Regional Municipality has unveiled design plans for memorial markers that will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Halifax Explosion.
Rayleen Hill owns the Dartmouth-based architect company that designed the 12 markers.
"We started thinking about this idea of an exploded tree, so that's where that initial tall, linear form came from," says Hill.
The markers will be placed in a number of significant locations around the municipality, from Dewolf Park to the Dartmouth Common.
Hill says each marker takes on a human element by connecting the past to the present.
"Each marker is a pair, and half of it is done in corten steel, which is a weathering, rusting steel, and that will be representative of the past,” says Hill. "The other part of the pair is going to be in polished, stainless steel, as if today we are reflecting on the past."
Each marker tells a narrative about its specific location. At Victoria Park, the story is about the medical relief and eye doctors helping many victims who went blind.
Elizabeth Taylor, who manages HRM’s culture and events, says a marker at Dartmouth's Ferry Terminal Park represents the rescue, meetings, and resolutions that took place between both sides of the Harbour.
"We want to talk about the resolve as well here in the park,” says Taylor. “This ferry never stopped throughout the whole explosion."
Another marker will be found just up the street at the Dartmouth Common, where a community that was obliterated will be remembered.
"We want them to be evocative of the pain and suffering that was involved, but also that sense of resilience and resolve that allowed people to literally rebuild their lives again," Taylor says.
The project is being funded by the Commemorate Canada Fund from Canadian Heritage. Taylor says three markers will be unveiled in time for the anniversary on Dec. 6. The others will be completed by March.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Suzette Belliveau.