May 29, 2009 at 3:36 am #174155
Out of curiosity and to help provide info for an on-going project has anyone seen any design criteria, guidelines, reports, white papers, etc. on cemetery layouts, requirements, and other basic criteria? I have seen very little and am a bit surprised. Any direction and advice is appreciated. Thanks in advance.
MikeMay 29, 2009 at 7:54 am #174169Rieto de SihombingoParticipant
I have handle this cemetry project a year ago. Me and my friends have made a book about an old cemetry too..
Requirements and other basic criteria is deferent betwen one with other, depends on it’s condition and ethnics rules, and evironment. May I know the problem in your site? Maybe we can shareMay 29, 2009 at 11:36 am #174168Christopher PatzkeParticipant
Morning Mike. The firm I work for specializes in cemetery design. I think the first thing to determine is the type of burial – full body or cremains or a combination of both. Are you direct burying the remains? Are there columbaria walls involved? Are there crypts and mauselea? Is there a “scattering gardens” for cremains? So many questions….LOLMay 29, 2009 at 2:44 pm #174167Lawrence GreeneParticipant
The few cemetery projects I worked on, the design program was to create the total number of plots as possible. It was very similar to designing a subdivision/ row housing.
We designed a main roadway system and then laid out “side streets” which acts as the space between the plots. If you were to walk down the “side street” you would have plots on your left and right.
In sizing the plots we were given the average vault size and then sized each plot at little bit wider and longer and left room for a burial stone.
Our design program was to keep it as simple as possible. They wanted a marker at the end of each row of plots. So if someone needed to be buried in plot (example E7) the cemetery staff could measure over from the marker the required distance and excavate the hole.
Another aspect we looked at was the depth to groundwater. Basically trying to determine how much of the vault is in the groundwater and making sure the groundwater would not force the vault out of the ground.
Hope that helpsMay 29, 2009 at 5:46 pm #174166
Thanks to you all for responding.
Chris and Riri has the right questions but I don’t have the information to understand the purposes of those elements of the design. Part of what we are trying to do is to “spruce up” a historic Colorado Eastern Plains cemetery (few trees, native grass, 100+ year headstones, wire fence, etc) and 1) improve the entry into town; 2) define the historic character of the cemetery; 3) upgrade the facility to serve a broader population with differing cemetery needs. In short I want the design to represent the ceremony and character of the facility.
Hence, I was looking for literature on what goes into programing a cemetery. Are there standards for plots, columbaria walls, crypts, mauselea, sexton, caretakers house, maintenance sheds, vegetation restrictions(?), etc. There seems to be no guideline book or graphic standards on which to base our design. And in that light we will be working based on precedents we can collect at facilities in the region and from the town cemetery board’s suggestions.
If anyone can help with this research search I do appreciate your help and will be happy to share.
MikeMay 29, 2009 at 9:09 pm #174165Nic WurzbacherParticipant
Hi Mike ,
I have 7 years design,construction experience related to cemetery field, including historic ones.Feel free to contact me with any questions you might have.May 29, 2009 at 9:18 pm #174164Matthew FosterParticipant
If you want to see great design and some inspiration for the cemetery check out this; Camilin Lonsdale, Cemetery.
From Robert Camlin the designer of the landscape at the London olympics, probably one of my favourite designs ive been shown to date.
MattMay 29, 2009 at 9:23 pm #174163
I, too, would love to know what resources people who are actively involved in the cemetery field learn the ins and outs of it. I’ve seen several books on specific cemeteries, but so far, not one book on design guidelines. Are they just ALL different? Did you learn what you know entirely on the job, or is there some resource available?May 29, 2009 at 9:37 pm #174162Nic WurzbacherParticipant
Most was learned on the job.It really is a niche market. Olmstead designed quite a few cemeteries. There is a basic rule of thumb,but it really is going to depend on what the type of final disposition is.May 29, 2009 at 9:40 pm #174161
dang. Well, I will keep track of this thread so I can bug you or Chris if I ever get to work on another. I did some minor work on one back in school. We had guidelines for the project that are long since lost.May 29, 2009 at 9:46 pm #174160
I just googled “cemetery design” and found these two web pages:
I hope those links work, I plan to spend some time this weekend plodding through them and looking for further information.
Thanks for starting the discussion, this has always been a curiosity of mine.May 30, 2009 at 4:18 am #174159
Again, thanks for the input and insight.
I think Nic is correct, this appears to be a niche market. And for those like Nic and Chris who are in the groove that is great. But none of us can build guidelines to encourage communities to engage in cemetery improvements (or to hire Nic to do the work) without knowledge of the field. Jennifer’s references are industry ICCFAS dialog on parts (most administrative) but still no comprehensive guidelines. I’ve contacted the ICCFAS in years past but found little help.
Unfortunately, our work is outreach advisement and concept design for small towns under low budgets (small towns have small budgets). But if we can get them excited about the design and what it can do for their town then they will go after grant funding and hire design professionals to step in to do the construction documents. This happens a lot as a result of our program in the parks, town facilities, downtown development, etc. Hence we are here looking for information to share, excite and motivate..
Keep the info coming. And, I promise we will share what we find and develop.
MikeOctober 2, 2009 at 5:32 pm #174158
As promised attached is the final report for that cemetery we were working on. This is for general information only and represents concept designs to help the town after the site was stripped of all mature vegetation by a tornado. New designs include revegetation, expansion to include a columbarium space, veterans memorial, visitor center and plaza. The majority of the work was prepared by my LA student intern Melanie Ames. The master plan was highly received by the community and we have already seen some response to the action plan presented. A special thanks to Melanie for her work and to the Town of Windsor Colorado for including us in this effort.
The presentations at the ASLA Conference last month on Mt Auburn Cemetary was a high point of the weekend.
Thanks again to all who offered assistance and advice.
MikeOctober 2, 2009 at 5:55 pm #174157
Thanks so much for posting that, I am looking forward to reading it!May 17, 2010 at 6:45 pm #174156Javier de JesúsParticipant
hi, I just got in this treath and saw your comment, I am from Mexico, and now i am doing my Tesis, you know, my last work at the university to get the diploma as Architect. and I chose a Cemenetry since my home town is really really out of places for our dead people. I would like to know if you have some info about the ecological burials, and aspects like hot to distribute them lots, so we don´t “contaminate” the earth. thanks.
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