The City’s decision to remove 77 Eucalyptus trees from parks and street rights-of-way has caused some City residents to raise their eyebrows.
Reinhard Karyl, who lives across from Christine Reed Park, told the Mirror that he questions the City’s rationale that the trees needed to be removed because they are considered to have a “high risk of failure” that could result in “future injuries and/or property damage.” He and other residents are upset that the City acted solely upon the evaluation of the trees by one expert arborist that the City hired. They also are concerned that “there was no public process on the issue so the residents could consult other experts.”
City Open Space Manager Elaine Polachek explained that in early May the City Manager briefed the City Council on the issue through an information item. She then stressed, “When public safety is involved, the City Manager has to have the ability to respond to that.”
Polachek also mentioned that thus far 75 of the 77 trees have already been cut down, and when the City examined them they have shown “a lot decay and contained very limited roots for support.”
In Karyl’s view, “The question of how much risk the City should take belongs to the residents and by extension to the elected officials, not to unelected bureaucrats.”