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When will Arlington National Cemetery run out of room for burials?

Arlington National Cemetery

On Memorial Day, the New York Times reported that Arlington National Cemetery is filling up quickly and running out of room for burial plots.

That has administrators of America’s most famous cemetery considering new restrictions on who can be buried there.

Arlington National Cemetery currently holds the remains of more than 420,000 military veterans, government officials and their families. 7,000 more are buried there each year.

With no room to grow beyond its current boundaries, if this burial rate keeps up, Arlington will completely run out of room for more burials within 25 years.

That’s why the U.S. Army, which manages the cemetery, is now looking at new restrictions that could deny burials to almost all veterans who are alive today.

The cemetery’s current rules allow any active duty service member, military retiree or veteran who was honorably discharged to be buried at Arlington.

But under the strictest proposal the Army is considering, only service members killed in action, or who've received the Medal of Honor, would be eligible for burial at Arlington.

That would likely mean the national cemetery would conduct fewer burials in a year than it now conducts in a week.

The Army is surveying public opinion about several options and is expected to announce its recommendations this fall.

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