Kauno Architektūros Festivalis

Study KAFe

1 The Centre of the Righteous Among the Nations and the Memorial in Kaunas




  1. Develop the architectural concept for the Centre of the Righteous Among the Nations, which would be original in its architectural composition and would be naturally embedded into the urban context of Kaunas. The idea of the Centre of the Righteous is to create a static memorial construction works, which would give a sense of the deeds by people of various nationalities of saving Jews during the Second World War. The Centre could become an international attraction, open to public and encouraging to remember the tragic events in the world in order to prevent them from ever happening again. The centre would also supplement the supplementing the network of education and research institutions already present in town.
  2. Context. The idea to honour the Righteous Among the Nations was raised more than a decade ago – member of the „Rotary“ club and representative of the Jewish community Michailas Duškešas suggested to build a monument as a sign of gratitude for Lithuanians, who saved Jews during the Second World War. Among those interested in the project were world famous architects Massimiliano Fuksas, whose father was from Kaunas, and Daniel Libeskind, who designed a memorial for the victims of 9/11 in New York. The main goal of the memorial is the gratitude of the Jews to people of Lithuania for the saved lives and inscribing the names of all residents of Lithuania, who were acknowledged as Righteous Among the Nations.
  3. The proposed lot is in the historical part of Kaunas – at the junction of Old and New Town, at the intersection of Šv. Gertrūdos and Birštono Str. The lot is by the a site of a former synagogue, which can also be included in the designed complex. The lot on the slope of a hill in the perspective of Birštono Str., visible from the main streets, creates exceptional possibilities for architectural expression of the building. The lot is currently occupied by a car parking lot.

Context of the location. A square is formed on the other side of the intersection of Birštono Str. – it is a former site of a market. Other sites in the close vicinity – Faculty of Catholic Theology of VDU in a historical building, historical Ragutis brewery. Territories of such type require understanding, that their exceptional and universal value is created by gradual evolution of the historical urban landscape. When designing in such areas, it is important to take into account the established context and surrounding conditions.


The area of the planned centre is 1,500–2,500 square metres.

The provided areas and descriptions of premises are indicative only. We encourage the participants of the competition to think creatively and provide their interpretations of the programme and the list of premises, if necessary.

Project program premises

Space type Space type area (M2) Breakdown Breakdown area (M2)
Front of House Approx. 1000 Entrance Hall/ Gallery (Temporary Exhibitions)   400
    Info Centre 30
    Cloakrooms 30
    Sanitation facilities 30
    Cafeteria 100
    Library 200
Event Spaces Approx. 1000 Hall 100-200
    Auditorium 200-300.
    Workshops 3 x 30
    Sanitation facilities  
Staff Spaces Approx.  500 Rooms for reseaches 5 x 15
    Open space meeting & working area 50 m2
    Staff rooms 4×15
    Sanitation facilities  
    Archive room 200
Back-of-House   IT Room, Storage 30
    Plant room, ducts, etc.  
    Public space in front of the building