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Decision on a memorial commemorating the deportation of Jewish citizens from the Grossmarkthalle in Frankfurt am Main

Remarks by Jean-Claude Trichet, President of the ECB,
Frankfurt am Main, 11 March 2011

Sehr geehrte Frau Oberbürgermeisterin Roth,

sehr geehrter Herr Schnabel,

sehr geehrte Kolleginnen und Kollegen der Jury,

sehr geehrte Damen und Herren,

I am honoured to be here today with Lord Mayor Roth and Mr Schnabel of the Jewish Community Frankfurt for the announcement of the final decision on the design concept for a Jewish memorial at the Grossmarkthalle in Frankfurt.

Since the very beginning of its new premises project, the European Central Bank (ECB), together with the Jewish Community Frankfurt and the City of Frankfurt, has been committed to establishing a memorial commemorating the deportation of Jewish citizens from the Grossmarkthalle. To honour this commitment, a design competition for such a memorial was launched by the City of Frankfurt. During the competition’s revision phase, which concludes today, we met with each of the three prizewinners to discuss the details of their design concept. As two of the proposals involved building the memorial on the ECB’s grounds, it was necessary to ensure that they could be built in line with the overall site development.

I believe we can all see that each prizewinner put in a considerable amount of work and effort to fine-tune and further develop their concept. The decision-making process involved long and in-depth discussions on the advantages and disadvantages of the three very different designs. These discussions were extremely fruitful and I am delighted that they led to a unanimous decision in favour of a remarkable memorial that will take full account of the location’s characteristics and reflect the drama of deportation and the holocaust.

The construction of the chosen design, as developed by Cologne-based architects KATZKAISER GbR, and in particular the construction of the ramp, will be carried out in close cooperation with the ECB, the architects of our new premises and the relevant planners. I am looking forward to the inauguration of the memorial.

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