Some people eat, sleep and chew gum, I do genealogy and write...

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Freeway Cemeteries

In driving across the country recently, I began to notice the medians between the two lanes of the freeway. I noticed that the median was mostly grass and well tended and I thought that this would be an ideal place for cemeteries. There are likely millions of acres of unused land going to waste as space fillers between the concrete or asphalt roadways. These huge unused parcels are just begging to be used as cemeteries. I thought about this concept and decided that I could form a non-profit corporation to promote the idea of using the freeway medians as cemetery property. On the Interstate System, the Federal Government would have a new source of revenue from selling cemetery lots and the users would benefit from the increased awareness of their gravesites. Access could be obtained from the existing turnarounds which are now reserved only for law enforcement and service vehicles.

I mentioned my idea to my wife who immediately saw a downside in the noise during graveside funerals. I noted that many of the cemeteries in our country are already on major highways and main streets and the noise factor would be no worse than is already in existence. In addition, some of the medians are far apart and the land in between the two roadways is wooded and the noise factor would be minimal.

Having just very recently taken a wrong turn, ending up on a freeway going away from where I wanted to be, and driving miles before an exit was available, I am already aware of that problem, but adequate signage and long turning lanes for entry would solve that issue.

This is a win-win situation, not only do the deceased get much greater visibility, the public, in general, is benefited from the accessibility and convenience of having a quick look at their ancestors as they drive by.

Anyone out there who wants to help me sponsor this new project?


  1. James:

    From a purely unemotional, statistical viewpoint I will give you credit; but from a practical view, I don't think it will sell for many reasons. Your wife raises a good one--who is going to want their loved ones buried next to a freeway? How do large numbers of people access the area and I suspect the numbers of accidents with the egress and ingress of visitors to the sites. When the graves are decorated or funerals are in process the gawkers would slow down traffic.

    In some cases I think that open space is there for further expansion of lanes when traffic growth dictates the need.

    Since the federal or state government owns the land, do they then take on the added cost and responsibility of maintaining the cemeteries?

    It is a lot of real estate; but I don't think you would ever get the highway safety engineers or the responsible government agencies to buy off on the idea.

    1. You are absolutely right on all accounts. Thanks for the comment.

  2. this could start a hole new fureral business. drive by & drive up visits, drop flowers...
    a bit worried about errant vehicles & crashes disturbing a peaceful sleep. ... hope they never plan on adding new lanes

  3. I had almost the the experience when the family cemetery with hundreds of family members including my grandparents ended up next to a runway at O'Hare Airport. We moved the cemetery in 2012 to make way for another runway directly over the location. I saw it often when flying in or out.