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Fayetteville National Cemetery Expanding

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KFSM) — The Fayetteville National Cemetery has started a new expansion project. Almost an acre of land will be added, and construction is ex...

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KFSM) — The Fayetteville National Cemetery has started a new expansion project. Almost an acre of land will be added, and construction is expected to last into 2020.

The Director of the Cemetery Skip Solomon told 5NEWS this addition will give them the space needed for new burials up to around 2035.

"It's really important to continue to offer the burial space to them. Because if this cemetery were to close in the future, the next nearest cemetery would be Fort Smith for the Department of Veteran Affairs," Soloman said.

The project will add 2,095 gravesites, 450 in-ground cremation niches, and 600 columbarium cremation space.

Work preparing the site will limit access at times to other areas of the cemetery. In February 2020, parking and visitation to the columbarium could be affected.

Solomon says visitation shouldn't be impeded.

The land for the expansion was donated by the Regional National Cemetery Improvement Corporation.

"Here the local community has come together to raise the funds, purchase the land and transfer it to the VA so that veterans can be buried keeping the promise that the nation made to them," Solomon said.

Wesley Stites, President of the Regional National Cemetery Improvement Corporations, says the group has other property adjacent or near the cemetery, it's planning for expansions.

The entire project is expected to be completed in October of 2020.

The expansion contract was awarded to C & C Contracting from Alabama at the cost of $2.3 million.