More burials

2015-05-05 06:00

Chevon Booysen

PHOTO: Chevon Booysen

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The graveyard grounds at Klip Road Cemetery will soon be expanded to make space for many more burials.

After realising a need for more burial space at the cemetery, the City of Cape Town will commence work at the site in the “next two weeks”.

Belinda Walker, mayoral committee member for community services and special projects, says the City parks department identified the need for the expansion.

“Klip Road Cemetery serves the greater southern suburbs and Cape Flats area as there is a shortage of vacant burial space in many of the existing cemeteries. This includes Muizenberg and Ottery cemeteries,” Walker says.

She adds the Plumstead Cemetery also had to be expanded after the same need was realised there.

“At the Plumstead Cemetery old pathways are being converted into burial space to keep up with demand for burying. Staff are promoting the option of reopening for second burials in the existing private graves,” she adds.

Walker says the option for completely new burial grounds in the southern suburbs cannot be offered at the moment.

“There are no opportunities for new cemetery development in the southern suburbs. An investigation into identified sites revealed that they were unsuitable for a number of reasons,” she says.

These reasons include land not being conducive for the development of burial grounds.

“Burial grounds cannot be developed due to a high water table, if the land was subject to land claims and in case of poor soil conditions as a result of illegal dumping. These are contributing factors to why there cannot be new burial grounds developed in the southern suburbs.”

Walker adds the original cemetery was already filled during 2007 except for some reserved family plots. “The Klip West extension (phase 1) was approved and has been in use since 2009 for burials. However, this extension is now at 95% capacity. The average number of burials at Klip Cemetery is in excess of 100 burials per month,” Walker explains.

A total of 6920 new graves will be added at the site.

“A total of 3.46 hectares will be used for burial blocks which equates to 6920 graves. Based on the current demand, if each grave is only used once, this will accommodate at least another 10 years of burial,” Walker adds.

The extension at Klip Road Cemetery will cost R3m to complete, she says.

Included in the extension will be roads that will be developed and provide for at least another 10 years.

Asked how the proposal for a waste drop-off facility will impact on the extension at Klip Road Cemetery, Ernest Sonnenberg, mayoral committee member for utility services, says it will have “minimal impact”.

“The proposal to establish a drop-off site north of the current Klip Road Cemetery (the proposed Prince George Drive drop-off site) will have a minimal impact on the cemetery extension. Should authorisation be granted for the drop-off site, the development will take place on the opposite side of the existing cemetery,” Sonnenberg says.V

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