City explains reason for tree removal

The City of Eagle Point is halfway through the construction of the first of two road improvement projects along Main Street in the downtown core.

The first project is the reconstruction of the Main Street and Royal Intersection. As part of the reconstruction project new water line connections and storm sewer lines have been placed to insure that the new intersection will not be disturbed by future utility line extensions. The intersection improvements include sidewalks at all four corners of the intersection with ADA access.

To construct the new sidewalk sections and complete the utility work, a large tree was removed that was located in the middle of the new sidewalk and directly over a new storm sewer line. The interior of the tree had begun to deteriorate and harbored a large bee’s nest. Removal of the tree caused more excitement than was expected. Some citizens have complained about the tree removal not knowing the details of why the tree was removed from the street right of way.

As a member of Tree City USA, Eagle Point has sustained a yearly practice of new tree plantings and the removal and replacement of old or diseased trees when necessary. More recent tree issues have been part of street or utility right of way problems. In all cases new trees have been planted  as replacements for those removed. The city council has been working with recommendations developed by the Eagle Point Economic Development Commission on a Main Street Streetscape Plan that incorporates new tree plantings, benches, water fountains, lighting and other features.

Some new sidewalk sections will be incorporated as part of the Main and Royal Intersection improvement along with some improvements to curb sections on an upcoming project to repave Main Street from Royal to Platt. Originally it was thought the tree in front of Main Event was going to have to be removed. But the city is doing everything it can to save it and fully expects it to remain.

Construction on this second Main Street Improvement will occur  some time next spring. Potentially other trees could be removed if found to be diseased or causing safety problems along the various sidewalks or street sections. Again, each of trees will be replaced in relationship to the new streetscape plan currently being reviewed by council and new trees planted according to the plan.The  majority of the existing trees along Main Street are expected to remain. Only if the tree were to be diseased or posing a safety threat to pedestrians by heaving the sidewalk section would the removal be considered. If alternative treatment is feasible to save a healthy tree, we would choose to maintain the existing tree.

Citizens are asked to communicate with  public works department 826-4212 ext 105 about the removal of trees or any other concern as it may relate to Main Street improvements.


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