St. Alban's Columbarium
Jamaica Queens, NY
A unique and prestigious project, the St. Albans National Cemetery is the first of five planned columbarium-only national cemeteries offering cremation burial options for Veterans and their families.
Located adjacent to the St Albans Community Living Center, the project redevelops the site of 1968 abandoned military barracks. Eventually the columbarium will accommodate up to 50,000 niches (during several phases of expansion) over a one-hundred-year period. QPK developed the site master plan to maximize burial capacities while minimizing disruption in future construction phases.
Respecting the formality, permanence, and significance of the facility, the concept is founded on a central concourse, flanked by an avenue of flags and columbaria walls. The central entry main flags and paved court provides strong imagery visualizing the prominence of this National Cemetery for intuitive wayfinding. The concourse forms a grand avenue, supporting pedestrian circulation, memorial ceremonies, and events. A committal shelter is positioned central within the court, adjacent to the mid-point of the vehicular drive, providing excellent access to cortege parking. The administration building (providing public restrooms, office/meeting area, and storage spaces) matches the natural aesthetics of the gateway, walls, and monuments consistent with national heritage character.
Site design includes native plants and materials specifically selected to provide an aesthetic befitting a National Cemetery. Plants were selected for high aesthetic value, low maintenance and tolerance to the urban environment. The site work includes automatic irrigation, underground stormwater infiltration systems, coordination / relocation of major utilities into a unified corridor, and security systems (including automatic gates and video surveillance system).