National Monument to Canada's Mission in Afghanistan

The National Monument to Canada's Mission in Afghanistan will serve as a testament to the commitment and sacrifice of Canadian Armed Forces members, police officers, public servants and civilians who served in Canada's mission in Afghanistan. The Monument will also recognize the strong support offered by Canadians at home to those who served during the mission.

Canadian Heritage is facilitating the development of the Monument in partnership with Veterans Affairs Canada, the project authority. The National Capital Commission will take responsibility for the development of design and construction of the Monument.

The site

The Monument will be prominently located at LeBreton Flats across from the Canadian War Museum, on the east side of Booth Street, north of the National Holocaust Monument. With views of Parliament and other key federal institutions, the site will provide easy access to and high visibility to the Monument for both vehicle and pedestrian traffic.

Aerial view of Wellington Street in Ottawa showing Parliament Hill and the Monument site
Aerial view showing Monument site area

The design

Four flak jackets and helmets are displayed on crosses and arranged in a circle. They sit on top of a raised round stone shape.

The design selected by the Government of Canada for this Monument was conceived by Team Stimson, comprising Adrian Stimson, Visual Artist; MBTW Group, Landscape Architects; and LeuWebb Projects, Public Art Coordinators. Drawing on elements of healing from the concept of the Medicine Wheel, the circular design evokes a sacred space of safety, a place for reflection, memory, and contemplation. Corten steel walls surround and protect the space.

Inscribed on the walls are the names of the Canadian fallen as well as a dedication to fallen Afghan Allies. In the centre of the space, four bronze flak jackets stand draped on crosses, utilitarian yet poignant reminders of protection. Taken together, this Monument creates a powerful opportunity to honour and reflect, to seek balance and healing, for all Canadians.

Design competition

Teams of professional artists, landscape architects, architects, and other urban design professionals were invited to submit their credentials and examples of prior work on similar projects as part of a Request for Qualifications that closed on February 27, 2020.

Five teams were shortlisted by a jury of experts in the fields of arts and urban design and representatives from key stakeholder groups to develop design concepts for this monument.

Veterans, families of those who participated in the Mission, Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members, other stakeholders and the Canadian public were invited to participate in an online survey to share their thoughts about the finalists' design concepts. The survey ran May 20 to June 9, 2021. You can view the results of the survey here.

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