How to Design a Successful Cemetery

Cemetery Design

Modern cemetery design is more than a place to lay a grave; it’s a vibrant celebration of life, family, history and individuality – integrated within a shared community.

Planning a new cemetery is a multi-step process, which involves analysis, land development and architectural and landscape design. It takes a special kind of know-how to integrate all these elements in one space.

Site Analysis

A cemetery should be a properly designed space that people remember their loved ones in. This requires good analysis and design that weaves natural and manmade elements into a peaceful memorial park.

When evaluating the land for a cemetery, an ecological analysis and planning must take into account the local topography, drainage ways and resources. This will help keep the design budget down, preserve local resources and contribute to a feeling of serenity.

The cemetery model as a multi-faceted space should be worked on (in accordance with a set of activities on different levels and scales of the cultural landscape) with a rich pro-environmental program. This will allow us to make the cemetery a green area and improve the quality of the surrounding environment.

Master Plan

The master plan phase of cemetery design is critical to the development and implementation of a successful cemetery project. It enables the development of a program statement that is focused on sales trends, emerging and existing burial preferences, community demographics, cemetery needs and maintenance requirements.

Developing a program statement for a cemetery involves understanding the site with regard to topography, drainage, vegetation, climate, utilities, zoning and other elements. It also involves analyzing potential future growth and development opportunities for the cemetery.

A good landscape design strategy for a cemetery encourages people to walk, recl uet, relax and contemplate. It helps promote a ‘lawn-park cemetery’.

Site Design

The site design phase of a cemetery design is critical in establishing the final resting place and creating a sense of peace. This requires understanding the site and incorporating the best elements of the natural landscape into the architecture and site structure.

Achieving the right balance of land and buildings can be challenging. Careful analysis of the cemetery’s sales and community demographics, cemetery needs and maintenance requirements should result in a design that is logical, aesthetically pleasing, and cost-effective to build.

Hilton Landmarks has extensive experience with cemetery development and provides a full suite of site planning, landscape design and architectural services to cemetery clients. Our strong focus on the value of place, sense of identity and site functionality results in creative and innovative built results that respect each project’s on-going life cycle costs.

Landscape Design

When designing cemetery landscapes, it is important to emphasize the identity of the space. This can be accomplished by bringing elements of nature into the design or creating an abstract space that emphasizes the idea of remembrance.

A key aspect of landscape design is the planting plan. This includes the selection of trees, shrubs and groundcovers.

This is an extremely important aspect of cemetery design as plants are used to create a beautiful environment and also to organize the spaces. They can also be used to help control noise and odor, as well as provide food for wildlife.

Architectural Design

The architectural design phase begins with a site analysis. This includes programming and developing a master plan. The master plan lays out the elements of the cemetery’s program and develops them into a cohesive whole.

The design reflects the history, culture and architectural context of the site. The LA Group team has a reputation for creating intuitive and dignified design that leaves a lasting impression.

For instance, the Green-Wood Cemetery Education and Welcome Center in New York uses glazed terra cotta to complement the historic greenhouse and Green-Wood’s landscape. The Center is energy efficient, LEED Gold certified, and features a sculpted green roof.

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