City of Charlotte – Cemetery Master Plan

Bringing Cemeteries to Life: How a Master Plan is Exploring Revival

The City of Charlotte owns and maintains 7 municipal cemeteries that cover almost 200 acres within the urban areas of Charlotte:  Elmwood, 9th Street Pinewood, North Pinewood, West Pinewood, Oaklawn, Old Settlers, and Evergreen. LaBella assisted the City with development of a Cemetery Master Plan with an overall goal of preserving, maintaining, and protecting the cemetery public assets.

LaBella’s master planning efforts to date have focused on the development of key strategies for implementation that would support expansion and enhancement of public access and use, guidance and standards for preservation, improvement in operations and management for efficiencies, and recommendations to support future sustainability of their cemeteries.







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Read more about cemeteries and how they can benefit the community in LaBella’s In Office publication!

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Multi-Phased Master Plan

The master plan is being implemented in multiple phases and has short- and long-term objectives. It is expected the plan will evolve with time to adapt to new opportunities and challenges that will likely arise.

Phase 1:

Phase 1 of the Master Plan included an inventory and assessment of all existing infrastructure, assets, and operational and maintenance needs; layout expansion opportunities for traditional grave lots and current burial trends; estimates for existing and future program budgets; recommendations to increase revenue; and identification and prioritization of improvements. One of the Phase I recommendations suggested consolidating program needs for a new office space, centralizing staff and equipment, and providing adequate archival storage all while considering a location that is frequently visited and utilized by the community.

Phase 2:

As part of Phase 2 efforts, LaBella developed concept designs for a new building to create a functional piece of architecture that can serve to help reflect, to inspire, to contemplate, to pay respect to, and to celebrate the cemetery and the modern City. The recommended new building concept and associated costs at Elmwood was presented to several stakeholders, including other City divisions, Historic Elmwood Pinewood Inc. (HEPI), and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks Commission, as part of advanced planning efforts. The concept was well received and further efforts for design of the new building, as well as improvements to other cemeteries, will be part of future phases of the master plan.

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