clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Haunting Stone Tower Spells Out Qatar's World Cup Death Toll

New, 1 comment

Though it's still years away, Qatar's 2022 World Cup has already been hugely controversial: over a thousand migrant workers have reportedly died from heat strokes, accidents, and disease since Qatar won the bid and began building infrastructure from scratch (Qatar's government has put the death toll at 964, but an investigation by the International Trade Union Federation estimates 1,200 fatalities). Everybody's trying to steer clear of the blame—Zaha Hadid, who's designing a stadium for the event, absolved herself earlier this year, and Fifa just denied responsibility this week. But the cause is not lost on the do-gooders at 1 Week 1 Project, the experimental architecture group that previously envisioned turning Brazil's World Cup stadium into affordable housing. This time around, they're proposing a simplistic but moving memorial that would immortalize every single life lost amidst preparations for the World Cup in Qatar.

Imagined as a striking symbol in the desert, 1W1P's memorial takes the form of a skeletal circular tower constructed from giant interlocking concrete beams, each representing a deceased worker. With two staircases serving each beam, the structure would theoretically allow families to mourn (precariously) up-close. There would also be cranes on standby, ready to append another stony module with every additional live lost. According to 1W1P, if the current rate of worker deaths continues (one report has projected a death toll of 4,000), the memorial could reach a height of nearly a mile. Here, the renderings paint a haunting memorial that, although almost certainly won't be built, serves as a alarming reminder of the cruel conditions on those World Cup construction sites.

· A Memorial to Qatar's World Cup Worker Deaths That Will Never Be Built [Gizmodo]
· All World Cup coverage [Curbed National]