Monday, August 17, 2009

My Messed Up Relationship with my Tree

In the August 6 Alameda Sun there were some cryptic letters to the editor titled "Save the Trees" and "Alameda a Misnomer". Given my love-hate relationship with the city owned liquidambar in front of my house, my curiosity was piqued.

"Save the Trees" refers to a City Staff report calling for "removal of all the tree in the Fernside, Gibbons and Versailles area." "Alameda A Misnomer" accuses the City of wanting to "hack down our venerable stock of trees" in the same areas.

I went to the City Council minutes to locate the staff reports. None found. I did find the Tanaka Group's Master Tree Plan update from January 09 which is a slide presentation and summary of a lot of items we already know.

I love my tree: it's tall and majestic, it provides a lot of shade, it looks awesome lined up on the street with the other urban canopy, sometimes a Cooper's Hawk takes a break on one of its branches.
I hate my tree: it rips up the sidewalk in front of my house, it's snapped my water main twice, it attracts crows that squawk at sunrise and crap all over the place.

All reasonable neighbors agree that some sort of 30 year phased swap out plan is needed to address the infrastructure problems these trees create. I know, it's not the trees' fault they were planted there...


So what gives? Where's this Staff Report? Even the Alameda Lorax is strangely silent about this one.

8 comments:

laurendo said...

The whole drama is actually around street resurfacing, the trees in danger are sort of a byproduct of that.

Two staff reports for reference:

http://www.ci.alameda.ca.us/archive/2009/attachments/cc_sub_2069.pdf

http://www.ci.alameda.ca.us/archive/2009/attachments/cc_sub_2382.pdf

Edmundo Delmundo said...

Thanks for those documents, LD.

Interesting how there is NO mention of Gibbons Dr. or Versailles St. in either of them.

Both of these projects are well known and have been over analyzed.
How does one make the stretch that there's some Grinch at public works sharpening his chain saw for every tree in town?

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