Cemetery plan for Whiteman

The WA Planning Commission and the Metropolitan Cemeteries Board (MCB) are finalising the boundaries of the 100-hectare site, while landscaping plans for the cemetery will be revealed in coming months.

The land in Whiteman will be near Bennett Brook and next to land set aside for a future City of Swan regional sports facility.

The WAPC released plans for an increase to 3.5 million people across Perth and Peel by 2050.

Perth�s growth is so rapid that the reserved Whitby cemetery site near Pinjarra will need to be expanded and another cemetery in the Peel area will be required.

A site in Yanchep is also being investigated for potential use as a cemetery.

Many factors need to be taken into consideration when planning the location of new cemeteries.

Population distribution, access to public transport and utility services, soil type, water table levels, contamination potential and surrounding land uses limit where a cemetery can go.

MCB chief executive Peter Deague said Whiteman would be a bushland cemetery.

�What we�d like to have is something very similar to Pinnaroo where people can drive off the main road and into a place that feels very appropriate to commemorate their loved ones,� he said.

Only families with existing graves will continue using the Midland and Guildford cemeteries.

�We�re constrained quite a lot and that�s one reason why we need to start moving on with Whiteman Park as soon as we can,� Mr Deague said.

�I would like to think in the next 10 years we would have some burial development in Whiteman Park.

�It�s certainly going to be a very lovely asset for the surrounding community and will certainly blend in with the environment around it.�

The WA Budget provided $645,000 to be spent on continuing the upgrade and construction of the Rockingham Regional Memorial Park in the next financial year.

Another site in Yanchep is also being investigated for potential use as a cemetery.

Department of Planning is in the final stages of arranging a 100-hectare plot of land in the south-east portion of Whiteman Park to be used as

The boundaries of the cemetery site are not yet confirmed but one side will adjoin a block of City of Swan land that set aside for a regional sports facility.

�We�re looking at a Pinnaroo type of design which means it will be a bushland cemetery,� he said.

�But we do need to be cognitive of some of the needs for the community out there who, for religious reasons, may want some headstone.�

�We normally do a demographic survey of the region and see how that translates to traditional burial customs then determine how much land should be allocated.

Aiming for 10 hectares to be reclaimed as natural bush consistent with vegetation at the stream.

We design for perpetuity.

�It�s a basis now of just determining the exact boundaries and determining the land fill needs.�

�They�re pretty much reaching their capacity now� so it�s pretty much just people using the existing graves, because you can have up to three burials in one grave.�

�There are existing families using those plots but

�It takes a while to establish a burial landscape� then we just do gradual development as needed according to the master plan.�

Metropolitan Cemeteries Board planning and operations director Tim Halls.