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National Cemetery Administration


Cemetery Components - Utility Distribution System

Picture of a workcrew installing electrical lines.


The function of the Utility Distribution System at a Veterans Cemetery is to route the main distribution systems for utilities.


Utility Distribution Systems include electric, gas, water, sewer and telephone lines. Different parts of the cemetery will require different utilities. The Administration Building for example requires all utilities. Committal Shelters require only electricity and water. Burial Sections will require water for flower vases and irrigation.

In many cemetery site layouts, the loop road incorporates most utilities. Utilities are brought into the cemetery based on the most direct or best utility access. The grant program does not pay for off-site utility lines. Since utility locations will vary, utility development costs (i.e. bringing utilities to the cemetery project property line) will vary with each project. Local utility companies must be contacted, and routing costs estimated to obtain utilities at a given cemetery project. State, Territorial or Tribal Veterans Administration officials and/or architect and engineering Master Planning team members may be required to recommend solutions for offsite utility development.

Related Items:

  • Electrical Survey
  • Electrical Utilities and Structures
  • Integrated Communication Lines
  • Fire Alarm Systems
  • Security Systems

Design Requirements

Route the main distribution systems for utilities immediately adjacent to roadways within 10 feet of the curb or pavement edge. Route any utility lines through interment areas between interment sections.

Install all utility lines, including electric power and communication lines underground. Exceptions may be made depending upon excessive cost or remoteness of a source from developed areas of the cemetery.

Eliminating power poles and overhead distribution lines will reduce maintenance and repair costs by reducing exposure or vulnerability to damage while reducing clutter in the visual environment.


The Veterans Cemetery Grant Program does not fund offsite utility development. Utility costs are approximately six percent of project cost. Cost varies based on anticipated utility requirements.