Canarsie Cemetery’s fate is sealed.
The city revealed on Monday its last remaining burial ground that is not a potter’s field, bounded by Remsen Avenue, Avenue K, Church Lane and East 86th Street, has been sold to a private company.
“We are in the process of transferring Canarsie Cemetery to a New York State not-for-profit cemetery corporation,” said Citywide Administrative Services spokesperson Mark Daly.
Daly refused to specify who bought the cemetery, saying he would only reveal that information after the deal is closed.
The New York Post reported that the cemetery was sold for $50,000. Daly would neither confirm or deny that report.
The city had put out the call for buyers of the cemetery last year and was looking at several bids.
The owners of Green-Wood and Cypress Hills cemeteries — both home to Brooklyn’s dead since the mid-1800s — are among those who have reportedly answered the city’s call for new ownership.
Whoever takes over the 13-acre burial ground would have to contend with high water levels making for mushy ground in parts of the property, maintain the current 6,400 graves and four small mausoleums, and have about 4.5 acres of undeveloped land to utilize for future grave sites.
The new owners must also be cognizant of residents who have strong ties to the cemetery.
“My whole family is buried over there,” said Mary Anne Sallustro, 66, “All the graves must be maintained and we don’t want any large mausoleums or a crematorium.”
Daly said that in the call for buyers it was clearly noted that all the graves would be maintained in perpetuity.
Any future mausoleums will be small and the cemetery is not zoned for crematoriums, he said.
©2010 Community News Group
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