The advent of Richmond's first ever memorial garden crept a little closer to reality this week.
Richmond - because of its high water table - can't have traditional cemeteries or burial grounds and the demand for a place of interment for cremated remains has grown steadily in the city over the years.
City council's parks and recreation committee was asked to consider progressing a proposal to site the memorial garden at the city-owned Woodward's Landing
park on Dyke Road, between No. 4 and 5 roads.
However, councillors wanted to expand the list of possible sites before reaching out with an expression of interest (EOI) for a private partner to operate what could be a five-acre memorial garden.
"The desire to have a place for individual and community memorialisation in Richmond has been raised by residents and council on numerous occasions," the city's park planner, Jamie Esko, said in a report.
A feasibility study and telephone study earlier this year has confirmed for city
staff a "strong demand for a memorial garden" in Richmond. A total of 22 cityowned sites were evaluated by staff, with Woodward's Landing selected as the most suitable.
Should the project go ahead at Woodward's Landing, the city would need to re-designate a similar size of park somewhere else in Richmond, possibly at Terra Nova Rural Park.
The Girl Guide camp on the Woodward's Landing site would also need to be relocated to a city site elsewhere in Richmond. The parks and recreation committee carried Coun. Linda Barnes' motion for staff to come back with an expanded list of possible memorial garden sites.
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