Iqaluit struggles to find new space for cemetery
Rocks and drainage issues hampered construction at 'Road To Nowhere' site in 2010
The City of Iqaluit has been trying for years to build a new cemetery as the current one can only be used for another two years.
But attempts to find a new site have run into problems.
Now, the city has asked for new design proposals for the site and a decision could be made by the end of the month.
In 2010, construction started for a new cemetery along the Road To Nowhere, but then quickly came to a halt.
"The conditions on the site were more difficult than anticipated and that led to construction being put on hold so we could investigate the best way to proceed given the constraints to the site," said Meagan Leach, the director of engineering and sustainability for the city.
Large rocks and drainage issues forced them to abandon the work, even after the city spent $400,000 on the project.
Now, a new plan is in the works. Leach said the city is considering modifying the plans to the Road to Nowhere site.
But Iqaluit’s longtime undertaker, Brian Pearson, said that plan makes no sense. He said the six-kilometre round-trip is too far for mourners to travel.
Pearson said a site in the West 40 area across town would be ideal.
"It's within the community, it has fairly reasonable terrain, it's easy to maintain, easy to get to because it's within the community as it were," he said.
Leach said the city could find a brand new site, but it would be up to city council to make that decision.
The Road to Nowhere cemetery — if completed as planned — has a capacity to last seven years. But before it can be used, the city would have to upgrade the road in order to make it accessible year-round.
Leach said the total cost and when it would be ready has yet to be determined.