Army to expand Arlington National Cemetery

arlington national cemetery

The sun rises over Section 68 of Arlington National Cemetery, Jan. 12, 2017, in Arlington, Va. The cemetery’s 624 acres is the final resting place for more than 400,000 active duty service members, veterans and their families. (U.S. Army photo by Rachel Larue/Arlington National Cemetery)

ARLINGTON, Va. — Arlington National Cemetery is moving ahead with plans to expand by roughly 50,000 spaces, extending the cemetery’s life beyond 2050.

The cemetery is run by the Army. For several years, military officials tried to negotiate a land swap with Arlington County that would allow the cemetery to expand and accommodate the county’s needs as well.

Arlington County announced Thursday that the Army has ended those negotiations, and intends to expand unilaterally on the site, known as the Navy Annex. It also will acquire about 5 acres (2 hectares) from Arlington County and 7 acres (3 hectares) from the state of Virginia.

County spokesman Brian Stout says Congressional legislation passed last year gives the Army the leverage to move ahead without exchanging any land. Army officials did not respond to questions.

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