MIDDLETOWN TOWNSHIP, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Plans to build a crematorium next to a quiet neighborhood has residents crying out, “not in my backyard.”
“Burning 10 bodies a day in the middle of a neighborhood full of children is ridiculous. We care about this neighborhood,” Bayville resident Wendy Venezio told CBS2’s Vanessa Murdock on Monday.
Many who call the Colts Glen neighborhood in Red Bank home want what they say is a toxic plan stopped. You see, Fair View Cemetery wants to build a crematorium in the woods right across from the quiet suburban stretch.
“It’s all about quality of life,” Red Bank resident Rich Tarabour said. Tarabour lives within 500 feet of the proposed build site. “It’s an environmental issue, it’s a safety issue,” Tarabour said. Tarabour said he’s even concerned his property value will drop, adding it’s happened elsewhere.
Resident Patrice Nichas can see the build site from her front door. She said her biggest concern is for the children who live and play in the area. “There are all sorts of things that could be in the air that I don’t think they’re really accounting for,” Nichas said.
Nichas and Tarabour want to crush Fair View Cemetery’s plans to build its crematorium. Throughout their neighborhood signs stand out urging that residents stop Fair View crematorium. There’s even a change.org petition with nearly 6,000 signatures.
CBS2’s Murdock stopped by the cemetery office looking to speak with the someone on the board, but had no luck. She called the cemetery’s lawyer, who declined an interview.
Building a crematorium is likely enticing for the cemetery because cremations are at an all-time high.
The National Funeral Directors Association’s 2017 cremation and burial report revealed that 50.2 percent of Americans chose cremation in 2016, compared to 48.5 percent in 2015. By 2035, the number is expected to skyrocket to nearly 79 percent.
The numbers matter little to those CBS2 spoke with.
“We’re gonna be putting up signs, attending council meetings that are going on and, hopefully, we’ll be able to shoot it down,” Red Bank resident Jason Dehanes said.
Because they say a crematorium built here benefits them zero.
Those in opposition said they will attend a planning board meeting on Wednesday to voice their concerns.