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Gilbert Approves Deal For Town's First Cemetery
Gilbert’s growth has created a need for new housing for the living and the departed.
The Town Council approved plans to create the first cemetery in the 96-year-old town last Thursday.
“In the past 30 years you’ve got a lot of families that have raised their kids here, they’ve lived here most of their lives or all of their lives,” said assistant to the town manager Jacob Ellis. “They don’t want to have to travel to some far distant place in order to find that final resting place for family members and loved ones.”
The cemetery will be on on about 20 acres of land off Queen Creek and Greenfield Roads. An additional two acres will be used for a funeral home, Ellis said.
The town has owned the land the cemetery will be on since 1999.
Gilbert issued a request for proposals to build and operate the cemetery in October 2015.
Mesa’s Bunker Family Funerals and Cremations was the final selection. Proposed plans include a funeral home, lawn burial area, a mausoleum and a cremation garden, Ellis said.
The town will lease the land to the Bunkers and then share in the profit.
“We will more than recover the cost of that land,” Ellis said.
The town estimates the cemetery will serve the community for 75 years and possibly longer if it is expanded onto nearby land.
The cemetery is expected to open in 2019.