PET LOSS CENTER AND CREMATORIUM
This client lost the building that was at this site due to a fire. United Architects, a Miami architecture firm with offices in Coral Gables, was hired to design a new building.
The site was in unincorporated Miami-Dade County very near Sweetwater and Florida International University. The building had been there since the 1960s. It had been a very simple building that contained a lobby, a small retail area, and a crematory area. When the building burned down, the client thought that he could just build a new one there. I advised the client on the zoning issues. From the zoning that it had, it was not at all clear that they would indeed be allowed to build a new crematorium there. Although architects would like to think that we know everything, it was obvious to me that this was an issue for an attorney, and I recommended one.
The attorney was excellent, and after some research, he was able to determine that the original building had a crematorium. Because of that, he was able to convince the county that the crematorium should be “grandfathered” in.
From what the client told me, this facility had been cremating the remains of some very loved pets in the Miami area for local veterinarians. It had been a very well-run facility and very productive. They had several trucks that would bring the pet bodies here for cremation.
In addition to the building, the facility had a cemetery behind the building. Clients had a choice to bury their pets instead of cremating them, so the cemetery was an extensive area behind the building. The old building had no reception area or private area for grieving clients to talk to the management about what they wanted.
THE NEW BUILDING
The new building was to be a much more upscale facility. It was to have, in addition to the crematory area, a large retail space to exhibit urns and caskets, a private office, a front reception area, and several offices and workspaces. On my recommendation, they added a small conference room for private discussions with their clients.
One of the things the original facility lacked was parking and landscaping. Both were added to the new facility. There was a separate entrance for the trucks and parking for them.
In the end, the building was never built because it was bought out by a larger national organization. Now I am working on a new facility for that organization. And you can see the recommendation from the former CEO Peter Gudmundsson of the pet crematorium here: https://www.unitedarchitectsinc.com/reviews-letters-of-recommendation
If you have an industrial facility with special needs, call me to discuss, Maria Luisa Castellanos, R.A., LEED AP, 305-439-7898 or email me at MLC@UnitedArchs.com
Landscape Plan above
Partial Site Plan above
Floor Plan above
Longitudinal Section above
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