Architectures of the Cold War: Memorial Event at the Diefenbunker

As part of the celebrations dedicated to its 50th anniversary, the Diefenbunker, Canada’s Cold War Museum invites you to the fourth annual Cold War Memorial Event on November 16, from 5:00 pm to 8:30pm.

The Diefenbunker is located in Carp, Ontario, southwest of Ottawa. David Monteyne, Associate Professor of Architecture at the University of Calgary, will deliver a public lecture entitled “Architectures of the Cold War” to officially launch his new book entitled Fallout Shelter: Designing for Civil Defense in the Cold War (University of Minnesota Press, 2011).

The Diefenbunker, and similar continuity-of-government facilities in the United States, were actually extreme and rare architectural responses to the Cold War. This lecture will explore the broad range of ways that architects, urban planners, and others attempted to reconfigure the built environment to help survive nuclear war in the 1950s-60s. As many critics pointed out at the time, governments tended to provide themselves with significantly better protection from nuclear weapons than they provided for their citizens. With a main focus on United States examples, this lecture will help situate the Diefenbunker in broader geographical, social, and architectural contexts.

From 5:00pm to 6:00pm, guided tours of the 100,000-square-foot underground facility will take place, followed by a public lecture and book launch. To conclude, a wine and cheese reception will run from 7:30pm to 8:30pm. The event is free of charge, but the Diefenbunker requires confirmation of your participation. Kindly reply to by Friday, November 11, 2011, and indicate in advance how many guests are interested in taking the tour as space is limited.