Hines Architecture Design has been commissioned to design the new African American Memorial at Bates M. Allen Park in Kendleton, Texas USA. The project by Fort Bend County aims to acknowledge and commemorate the historical contributions and legacies of its Black residents.

The unearthing of the remains of 95 Black inmates in unmarked graves at a former prison cemetery in Sugarland, Texas, has prompted several important memorial projects. This particular project seeks to create a cultural and heritage destination that celebrates, pays homage to, and narrates the stories related to the State's past convict leasing program, various injustices, the significant role played by Black citizens in the community, and education about the African diaspora.

The design is an opportunity to transform 14 acres (5.7 hectares) of an existing park into this cultural destination. Our design approach involves formalizing and connecting existing historic black cemeteries and incorporating new site interventions, including an arrivals mall featuring a Juneteenth Plaza, a notable 40 feet in height monument, and a reflecting pond designed to accommodate a replica lynching placard from the Equal Justice Institute.

Plans for the site include the establishment of an African American Learning Center. The recurring theme of circles and geometry in the design serves as conceptual and physical representations of connectivity and the continuous understanding of the African American diaspora. The memorial and planned learning center is intended to further encourage dialogue and conversations regarding the county’s resident's rich American history.


Project Scope: 14 Acres / 5.7 Hectares
Monument and Plaza Material: Red Precast Concrete / Cast-in Place Concrete / Gabion Rock Walls
Monument Height: 40 Feet / 13 Meters

Architect: HINES Architecture Design
Landscape: Landology
Civil: VOGT Engineering
Structural: CDI / HOK Houston
Lighting: Buro Happold New York
Client: Fort Bend County, Texas


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