Request for 3,000-grave Muslim cemetery denied

Local News

The Muslim Community Help Center was denied approval to turn a field near U.S. 27 and Maples Road into a cemetery.

ALLEN COUNTY, Ind. (WANE) – A plan for a new cemetery south of Fort Wayne, serving the ‘entire Muslim community’ in the area appears to have hit a dead end.

The Allen County Board of Zoning Appeals heard a request Wednesday to turn a field near U.S. 27 and Maples Road into a cemetery. The plan, put forward by The Muslim Community Help Center, would have included space for 3,648 graves.

A couple of neighbors spoke against the plan. Among those was a representative for Pathfinder Communications, known as Federated Media, which operates several radio stations just to the south of field.

The attorney questioned if the group was prepared to take on the task of operating and maintaining a cemetery. The representative for the Muslim Community Help Center said the group was approved by the state to own a cemetery.

Neighbors also questioned the burial process for Muslims, concerned bodies would not be embalmed, endangering the surrounding land. The group clarified that the bodies would be buried in concrete vaults.

Ultimately, the board denied the request in a 4-1 vote.

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