Site of War-Time Massacre in Sarajevo Transformed into Place of Peace, Love, and Local Produce

sarajevo markale produce market photo

The existing Markale Produce Market. Photo: me5otron / Creative Commons.

The site of one of the worst civilian massacres during the Bosnian War could become a "healing ground" for the city of Sarajevo and its people, through a proposal by a Danish architecture student who suggests turning the central open-air marketplace into a combined cooperative market and urban farm.The idea "offers the potential for psychological and physical healing through the re-connection to productive land, environment [and] food systems," writes Jedidiah Gordon-Moran, who conceived the idea of creating a community-owned market-farm out of the existing Markale Produce Market, where more than 60 people were killed in a mortar attack during the Bosnian War in 1994.

sarajevo urban farm concept image

Concept for an urban market-farm in Sarajevo. Image: Jedidiah Gordon-Moran.
In a city where meaningful public spaces have become few and far between, this market gives people from diverse backgrounds a shared gathering place where seeds of community will grow and thrive... The goal is to build resilient, decentralized food systems, to strengthen community connections, and to reinvigorate urban public spaces.

Gordon-Moran received an honorable mention in the CoARQ student architecture competition for his first-year Master of Architecture project, "Healing Ground: An urban market-farm in Sarajevo." His plan envisions using permaculture principles to create a productive, sustainable farm that is integrated into its urban environment.

Terraces and raised beds on rooftop would grow crops and flowers to be sold in the market, while a solar greenhouse with aquaponic units would produce farmed fish and vegetables. There would even be an attached chicken house that generates renewable heat for the market -- and eggs and poultry for local dinner tables.

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