Image Courtesy Dbox for The Mother Emanuel Nine Memorial / Handel Architects

Charleston’s Board of Architectural Review (BAR) unanimously approved the proposed design for  the Emanuel Nine Memorial and Survivors’ Garden honoring victims and survivors of the 2015 Mother Emanuel AME Church tragedy, as reported by Charleston’s ABC News 4.

“After three years of thoughtful planning and consideration by all involved, this signifies the beginning of an important new chapter,” said Reverend Eric S.C. Manning, pastor of Mother Emanuel A.M.E Church. “We are another step closer to turning this remarkable design into a reality.

Architect Michael Arad and The Beach Company CEO John Darby, who also serves as co-chair of the memorial’s executive committee, attended the BAR presentation and ruling, along with representatives from community groups speaking in favor of the design.

Arad began the design process by reframing the church grounds to create a sacred space for a memorial and a garden space to honor the survivors. A Memorial courtyard was designed in honor of the spirit and fellowship of the Emanuel Nine. Once completed, the Emanuel Nine Memorial will be a place for both the congregation and the Charleston community. It encourages people of all backgrounds and walks of life to come together to realize positive change, while also creating a space to reflect in quiet contemplation.

“The Foundation’s $15 million fundraising goal for construction, operations and outreach will ensure that the memorial will be sustained independently from the church,” said Darby. “Plans for the memorial include significant long-term community outreach to foster unity and racial healing.”

To contribute to the Emanuel Nine Memorial, please visit: