National Martyrs' Memorial situated at
Savar, about 35 km north-west of Dhaka, symbolizes the valour
and sacrifice of the martyrs who sacrificed their lives for the
liberation of Bangladesh.
A national competition was held for the design of
the project in June 1978. Among the fifty-seven competitors
Architect Syed Moinul Hossain's design proposal was selected.
The main monument is composed of seven isosceles
triangular planes each varying in size in its height and base. The
highest one has the smallest base while the broadest base has the
lowest height. The planes are folded at the middle and placed one
after another. The highest point of the structure reaches 150 feet.
This unique arrangement of the planes has created a structure that
seems to change its configuration when viewed from different angles.
The architect has used concrete for the monument
while all the other structures and pavements of the complex are made
of red bricks. Use of different materials has added to the gravity
of the monument. The whole complex is spread over an area of 34
hectares (84 acres) which is again wrapped around by a green belt of
10 hectares (24.7 acre). Several mass-graves and a reflection water
body are placed in front of the monument. Once one enters the
complex through the main gate he or she can see the monument axially
but to reach it one has to walk through different ups and downs of
pavements and cross an artificial lake by a bridge-all these
represent the struggle for independence.
The project was constructed in three phases. The
first one, began in 1972, involved in acquiring land and
constructing road for the project at a cost of Tk 26 lacs. During
the second phase, 1974 - 1982, Tk 3.77 crores were spent in order to
build the mass-graves, helipad, parking space, pavements etc. In the
third phase, began in August 1982, the main structure was built
apart from the artificial lake, green belt, cafeteria, housing etc.
The third phase required Tk 848.65 lacs. The Public Works Department
of the Government of Bangladesh supervised the construction of the
project. [Md Shahidul Amin and M Zakiul Islam]. The above text was