SAN RAMON (KPIX 5) — Residents of an East Bay community are in a fight over a proposed cemetery, but it may be that civic leaders have no way of stopping it.
The Tassajara Valley area of San Ramon would be the site for the proposed Creekside Memorial Cemetery, which would include space for 100,000 burial plots, along with four outdoor mausoleums, a chapel, and office and storage buildings.
The site would be on a 222-acre open space area of rolling hills and scenic views. “We got Mount Diablo to the north of here. Our urban growth boundry runs right along this ridge line. And it basically becomes almost wilderness almost a mile as the crow flies to the East of here,” said San Ramon Vice Mayor Phil O’Loane. “A beautiful area that should remain the way it is.”
The $43 million plan has been in the works for nearly a decade.
O’Loane said the plan is outdated and unwanted by residents, and cited water concerns and the impact on the landscape.
But city leaders say the decision rests with Contra Costa County, since the site falls under the county’s jurisdiction.
Meanwhile, the developer says the need for cemetery space is real, and the opposition to the plan is misguided.
“I guess the best thing I could say is ‘don’t listen to all the rhetoric,'” said landowner Sid Corrie. “A lot of the negative rhetoric, people have an axe to grind, and they have a financial interest in preventing the cemetery from being placed there.”
At eight years and counting, the debate finally seems to be nearing some type of conclusion.
“This has been delayed a bunch of times, and we want to kill this thing off,” said O’Loane.
“When you get right down to it, where are you going to bury them if this cemetery fails?” said Corrie.
County officials told KPIX 5 they could not comment about the cemetery proposal as the plans are still under review.