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(Australian Associated Press)
Sleeping with the fishes may not be as sinister as it sounds if a Gold Coast plan for an underwater graveyard gets the green light.
The city council is considering a proposal to create an underwater memorial reef as a way to address a shortage of burial plots in Australia’s sixth-largest city.
It could allow for cremated remains to be interred inside structures under the waves or mixed in concrete to create new sections.
Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate hopes if the plan is approved it will be built in the same part of the sea where he hopes to sink a multimillion-dollar pyramid structure to create a dive site.
If he gets his way, the precinct will be about two nautical miles off the coast of the city’s Spit.
Mr Tate says the idea is inspired by the Neptune Memorial Reef off the US city of Miami, which was created in 2007 and has a 125,000-plot capacity.
“So many people during the day – 300 days of sunshine – say, ‘Gee, I wish I was in the ocean’. Well, this way you can have your wish granted forever,” Cr Tate told reporters on Tuesday.
Mr Tate says a lack of space for grave plots is a growing problem across many cities.
The idea is set to be put to the council’s lifestyle and community committee later this year.
Long-serving councillor Dawn Crichlow supports the the plan but would rather have the memorial in the Broadwater wants to see an underwater graveyard built at the Broadwater off the Southport coast near Wavebreak Island.