This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Departure, A New Urban Cemetery




Sauer, Megan

Type of Degree

Landscape Thesis


Landscape Architecture


Cemeteries can offer tremendous value as a landscape that bonds us to our humanity. Yet, the once popular American cemetery has become alienated from the living. These sacred landscapes have become obscure spaces embedded with the uncomfortable reality of death. The static nature of these sites place unseen pressures on communities creating tension within the landscape. There is an opportunity to reshape the current discourse surrounding these sites that has social, cultural, environmental effects. Re-envisioning these landscapes and drawing upon connections from our social ties, the memorial landscape can foster our mental and physical health. Through design research this project explores the unique relationships we have with the cemetery landscape and seeks to find a balance between the need to create bonds with others while allowing individual expression. By fostering these new interactions a perceptual shift can begin to take hold and bring life, hope, and meaning back to these places.