During a recent visit to New York City, I visited the DeathLAB. A group of architects and designers based out of Columbia University’s School of Architecture whose focus is to design and create options for processing the dead while at the same time memorializing them.

New York’s Architects, city planners and designers are working together to design new models of mortuary infrastructures that are also biologically sensible.

In New York City alone there are:

  • 6 deaths per hour
  • 144 deaths per day
  • 1,008 deaths this week
  • 4,320 deaths this month
  • 51,840 this year

We are running out of space to bury the dead and the cost and energy consumption of cremation is escalating.

Karla Rothstein, architect and founder of the DeathLAB, writes: “Given rapidly depleting cemetery space, increasing urban populations, and the acute environmental toll of both burial and cremation, alternative funerary practices are inevitable, yet currently unresolved. Our cities require new mortuary options, which respond to the constraints of ecology, time, and limited burial space.”

CBS News recently featured Karla in a segment entitled “Cemeteries of the Future”. Click here to view the video.

To visit the DeathLAB website, click here. Be sure to check out Constellation Park – a suspended public memorial, shimmering across a vital city skyline.