IASA 2018 Landscape Planning Cemetery

The Neighborhood’S Cemetery: Reclaiming Cemeteries Inside The City (Amman) by Tala Khaled Shelbayh

Amman’s cemeteries are suffering from being neglected, unplanned and misused. These cemeteries are facing a big problem, it become a protected area for Unethical behaviors, nonetheless, placing loads of burden on the city. Cemeteries are an essential land-use typology in every city; however, in many planning processes, they have not been carefully worked upon and been largely ignored.

International Award for Sustainable Architecture Awards 2018
First Award | Category: Landscape Planning Cemetery
Architects: Tala Shelbayh
University: Graduation Project Thesis German Jordanian University
Supervisor: Arch. Tha’er Qub’a
Country: Jordan

While city plans seek to develop an organized expansion, that serves its population, cemeteries have been left out of the growth plans. Moreover, the Government’s only solution (in Amman) was to locate cemeteries outside the city. A total of 133 small cemeteries are within the Municipality boundaries now, many of which are located within highly populated residential neighborhoods, (these old Cemeteries were at the edge of the city, but due to the population and the city’s growth, these cemeteries became a part of the city).

Nowadays in Amman, the municipality has created two huge central cemeteries ‘’Sahab and Shafa Badran‘’ , outside the City, which will eventually one day take place inside the city (as the other 133 cemetery) but with a massive problem.

The criteria that was used for selection of cemeteries are not compatible to the existing situation, and according to demand, cemeteries are scattered, unplanned, zoned and are not well designed. And are located far away from services or facilities. Landscape within the cemeteries are also neglected and not designed.

The Urban Level

Central cemeteries aren’t the solution! Cemeteries must be integrated within neighborhoods and must act as positive spaces by adding new functions that serves the living and create sense of social solidarity.

Cemetery’s added functions:

التكية01 Al-Tikyeh

* Is one of the important Traditional communal buildings that dates back to the Ottoman era. In

modern times the hospice (meaning shelter) is a place where the poor reside or travelers. It is also known as a place that people give away things for poor people and others. Most of the Takaya (plural of Tikyeh) consists of the following sections: Worship place, library, Community kitchen, Public room for public reception, and other communal spaces.

The 21st Century Tikyeh Contains the following:
Library (dead people’s books, writings, archive).
Storage (for the given things). 
Community Kitchen
Multipurpose hall (for funerals and other neighborhood events).
02 The Park
Open public space for the Neighborhood.
03 Funeral House
Space for laying out
Space for Ritual Washing

The Site: Location: Chechens cemetery, Sweileh, Amman, Jordan.

The criteria was to select an existing old cemetery inside a dense residential neighborhood, as an example for the project. The site was treated from scratch.


The Architectural Level:

To design a module as burial units which will be moved under ground level while using the roof of it as public spaces that service the living needs in the neighborhood.

Another great opportunity. APR’s next award Urban Design & Architecture Design Awards 2018 is open for Registration.