The Czech city of Aš – close to the bank of the Ohře, a tributary of the Elbe River, and to the German border – has a Park of Memories that harnesses the area’s geographical and symbolic potential. The objective of the project was to honor the past and guide visitors through the city’s history, providing interesting information by means of interactive points within the park.

The spatio-temporal composition generates a gradual transition from the area around Goethe’s Square to Okružní Street, linking up the botanical and architectural concepts of the park to reflect the diversity of the city’s historical periods. The project also presents a sad chapter in the history of Aš, having to do with the 1970 destruction of its largest cemetery and the consequent loss of important cultural treasures. A memorial to mark this episode presents stone blocks of different sizes, with recesses for candles to remember ancestors by. In addition, the city’s oldest stone bridge was restored. The intervention was accompanied by an archaeological survey which revealed old cellars, to be used for cultural events. A new footbridge with a structure combining steel and wood winds through the park above ground, never touching the original cemetery level. All ground surfaces were modified to absorb water effectively. This was a key part of the ecological design, instrumental to reducing risks of flood and improving the local water cycle.