MEMORIAL PARK 681: A new proposal for the future of the monument 1300 Years Bulgaria and a reconstruction of the demolished Memorial to the Fallen Soldiers of the First and Sixth Regiment of Sofia
On February 23rd, a new proposal was released concerning the future of the monument 1300 Years Bulgaria in the Bulgarian capital Sofia . The project offered an alternative to the proposed demolition prior to Bulgaria’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union 2018 in the adjacent National Palace of Culture.
Memorial Park 681 proposes a contemporary repair and reimagining of the existing monument and the construction of a new Memorial to the Fallen Soldiers of the First and Sixth Regiment of Sofia. The proposed scheme recognises the history and the significance of the demolished original memorial. It will be restored which will make a substantial contribution to the life of the city. The proposal is also seen as a last opportunity to question the scheduled demolition of the monument 1300 Years Bulgaria in spring 2017.
“Having considered the story of the Memorial to the Fallen Soldiers of the First and Sixth Regiment of Sofia and that of the monument 1300 Years Bulgaria, one cannot help but see the similarity of their fate. History is repeating itself. However, it is not our history that will decide what happens now. It is down to us. And so we are faced with a dilemma. To demolish 1300 Years Bulgaria and re-construct a memory out of place and context, or build on their shared story a new memorial. A memorial that brings everyone together and reveals who we are.” – Julian Manev, initiator and designer of the proposal.
It builds on the virtues of previous and current uses of the site, and offers an opportunity for the site to have a more complex significance and meaning. I propose that the complex be renamed Memorial Park 681 in recognition of its role in celebrating the year of Bulgaria’s foundation.