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Project Background

Arlington National Cemetery (ANC) is at a crossroads in its history. In approximately twenty-five years, ANC will run out of space as an active cemetery to honor our nation’s veterans. In order to significantly extend ANC’s capacity, changes to either eligibility criteria and/or expansion of the cemetery’s geographic footprint are required. 

In the 1998 ANC Master Plan, the former Navy Annex site was first identified as suitable interment space due to its location and existing DoD ownership. This area contains underutilized land which could be made contiguous with the cemetery by realigning roadways. The Southern Expansion Project area consists of approximately 70 acres and will expand the cemetery’s capacity to remain open and active into the mid-2050s.

Proposed Action

Preferred Alternative

Arlington National Cemetery proposes to establish a single contiguous parcel of land south of the cemetery by closing and relocating local roadways and developing the parcel to increase interment capacity and increase multi-modal transportation capacity on Columbia Pike. Absent the roadway relocation/realignment, creating a contiguous parcel would not be possible. 

The Proposed Action would increase the Cemetery’s burial capacity by 40,000-60,000 spaces for first interments. The Southern Expansion site currently is the only available land that is suitable for a comprehensive development opportunity. The existing Air Force Memorial would be incorporated into the cemetery expansion.
Arlington National Cemetery proposes to establish a single contiguous parcel of land south of the cemetery by closing and relocating local roadways and developing the parcel to increase interment capacity and increase multi-modal transportation capacity on Columbia Pike. Absent the roadway relocation/realignment, creating a contiguous parcel would not be possible. The Proposed Action would increase the Cemetery’s burial capacity by 40,000- 60,000 spaces for first interments. The Southern Expansion site currently is the only available land that is suitable for a comprehensive development opportunity. The existing Air Force Memorial (AFM) would be incorporated into the cemetery expansion.

Purpose and Need

The Proposed Action is needed to meet the forecasted interment/inurnment demands of eligible veterans and to preserve ANC as an active military cemetery well into the future. The Proposed Action is needed to improve transportation and transit options along the Columbia Pike corridor thereby improving the environment, economy and quality of life. 

The purpose of the Proposed Action is: 

• to increase burial capacity; 

• to increase the capacity for regional multimodal transportation for roadways within the Action Area; and, 

• to maintain adequate safety and capacity levels of service for roadways within the Action Area.