Future Proofing the Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park

We are pleased to announce that i2C is currently working together with the Southern Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust (SMCT) NSW to redevelop the Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park (ESMP) in Matraville, NSW.

i2C has been engaged to provide consultancy and design services to develop a concept which will alleviate Sydney’s burial plot shortage. All available burial plots in Sydney are feared to be exhausted by 2051.

The idea is to design a memorial wall and chamber with an ossuary concept at the ground level which will be one of the first in Australia. The goal is to provide families with an environment in which to honour their deceased. i2C created an animation piece to help explain the development concept.

Ground Level Burial 

Burial positions on the ground level development will be engineered for a three-deep burial system + ossuary void within the adjoining footpath with provisional space for four times ossuary interments.

There will also be opportunity over time for a lift and deepen model combined with the lift and lengthen model to take place meaning the existing interments are to be placed within ossuary boxes and buried deeper in the same grave to allow for additional interments within the burial positions.

With this in mind, each grave position would have the potential of being the resting placed for up to 11 separate interments.

Ground Level – 19,800

Memorial chamber below ground level burial 

The memorial wall and chamber development will be constructed directly underneath the ground level burials and provide an additional 3600 burial interment positions. The development will accommodate a mausoleum style of interment with provisional spaces for Ash and Ossuary Placements, which are not calculated at this time.

Engineers are currently undergoing investigations to see whether a third level is practical for the proposed site location.

After the staged development is completed there will be a potential of 23,400 additional interments.

Ground Level – 19,800

Memorial chamber below ground level burial – 3600

Potential third level – 3600 (not calculated in final number, contingent to engineers’ investigations)

Working closely with Graham Boyd, CEO of SMCT, and his team, we are currently undertaking research through community engagement following workshops which were conducted within the trust organisation and with local funeral directors.

Once all findings are discovered, i2C will prepare the project brief to enable the concept to be developed further.

The topic has found some great interest in the media with the Sydney Morning Herald , ABC Breakfast NEWS television show and 2GB Radio. (See below for details)

We are very excited to be part of this journey to create a serene and reflective place where loved ones can be remembered.

Project Name: Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park

Client: Southern Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust

Location: Matraville, NSW

Status: Community Engagement and Concept


Sydney Morning Herald – 6th Jan 2018

Share housing for skeletons: New plan to maximise Sydney’s burial plots.

Image: SMH Article by Mario Christodoulou

ABC Breakfast NEWS – 7 Jan 2018

ABC News: Cemetery Space

2GB interview with Michael McLaren and Graham Boyd, CEO SMCT – 8 Jan 2018

(Interview segment from 55:20 to 1:06:20).

Click here to listen:

Finder.com 11 Apr 2018

Local cemetery takes on Sydney’s burial plot shortage.

Sydney Morning Herald – 21 Apr 2018

Medium-density death: Rookwood plans multistorey mausoleum. Click here to read

Architecture and Design – 24 Apr 2018

Grave concerns about Sydney’s burial space crisis. Click here to read.

Photo: Southern Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust

2GB interview with Michael McLaren and Graham Boyd, CEO SMCT – 24 Apr 2018

Sydney destined for multistorey burial spaces

Click here to listen

Maggie Steele


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