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Schaerbeek plans Brussels' first pet crematorium
Officials in Schaerbeek hope to start construction work late next year on Brussels' first pet crematorium.
A plot of land in Schaerbeek cemetery - which is in Evere - has been identified for the project, which was first discussed a decade ago.
Ixelles has a pet cemetery, which only accepts cremated animals - but there are no cremation facilities within the Brussels region.
Ixelles mayor Dominique Dufour welcomed the idea, saying: "It will make it cheaper for those who want to bury their animal here, who currently have to get their pet cremated outside the Brussels region."
Animal-lovers wishing to use the Schaerbeek crematorium would pay between €50 and €100 depending on the type of cremation - individual or group.
There are an estimated quarter of a million pets living in Brussels homes - and with about 20,000 pet deaths each year "this new facility should be financially viable", said Schaerbeek alderman Bernard Guillaume, who has been on a research visit to similar facilities in France and elsewhere in Belgium.
A study 10 years ago, when the idea was first discussed, put the cost at €1.5 million. The Brussels intercommunal cremation service would foot half of the bill, with the Brussels region being asked to subsidise the rest.
If approved, construction work would begin in late 2018 at the earliest.