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Alameda Officials Issue Statement on Park Street Tree Cutting

This afternoon, Alameda Deputy City Manager Alexander Nguyen released a statement to the media regarding the wholesale cutting-down of trees on the boulevard along Park Street. He also announced a public meeting on the matter.

The tree cutting has elicited cries of outrage from residents, and continues; earlier today, Action Alameda News published these photographs of the stumps of trees that were cut down on Wednesday between Lincoln and Webb.

The full text of the statement issued by the City of Alameda is reproduced below. The statement is unattributed.

The City failed to notify the general public recently that the 2nd phase of the Streetscape Project on Park Street would begin with the immediate removal of the trees between Lincoln Ave and Webb Ave and from Central to San Jose . There is no excuse; this was a mistake. The sight of tree-less stretches of Park Street shocked and dismayed many, many Alamedans as they were going about their regular routine on the street. We acknowledge that people were justifiably angry with City Hall for this unwelcome surprise.

Although the Streetscape Project had gone through a public process and gained the necessary approvals and eventual funding, all that happened several years ago and is clearly now out of the public’s mind. The City should have conducted a new public outreach effort to remind and inform people about the tree removal and consider changes to the project based on lessons learned from Phase 1 ( Park Street between Webb and Central).

We will be holding a public meeting on Wednesday, November 09, at City Hall Council Chambers from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. At this meeting City staff will explain the project, listen to community feedback, and explore options to improve the project that are within the parameters of the City’s Master Street Tree Plan.

The current project is scheduled for mid-October through March 2012. The goals are to improve the street for pedestrians, bicyclists, bus riders, and automobile drivers and include these basic elements:

Replant 60 trees for the 31 removed. The new tress will be a variety of species and size.
Remove 62 parking meters and replace with 8 parking kiosks.
Add 12 bicycle racks (there is only 1 now).
Add 2 bus shelters on each side of Park St. south of Encinal Ave.
Replace 11 existing cobra-head street lights with 38 dual-lamp historic street lights.
Repair areas of sidewalk that have been raised by tree roots, posing tripping hazards.
The City commits to holding community meetings prior to any similar project in the future.

WHAT: Community Meeting about Park Street
WHEN: Wednesday, November 9th at 6:30 p.m.
WHERE: Alameda City Hall Council Chamber
2263 Santa Clara Avenue

9 comments to Alameda Officials Issue Statement on Park Street Tree Cutting

  • Michael

    It is good to hear the apology, but it doesn’t bring the trees back.

  • Where did you see an apology?

  • Anonymous

    Better apology than Adam Gillitt gave to the old lady at the Webster Jam.

  • DHL

    Anonymous et al: ENOUGH ALREADY with this bifurcated political culture of snide and hate-filled remarks! Quit derogating the conversation or get out of our way: we are focused on fact-based discussions and intend to bring Alameda, even if it’s kicking and screaming, into contemporary culture where evidence-based discussions between various groups is the norm and nothing is personal or vindictive! Step off or step up!

  • Anonymous – we’re looking at moving to a moderated comment model, with comments approved only for those that register with a real name. Would you still make the same comment under your real name?

  • 94502

    Too little too late from city hall.

    When will they learn?

  • Pam M.

    I understand that the city is seeking to improve the aesthetics of our city and improve transportation flow through the city while encouraging less autos and more bus and bike transport. Commendable. But in my opinion, I do not understand how, how, how anyone could vote to just chop down trees that have existed for decades and add so much character to our lovely city. It breaks my heart to see these trees just gone! The trees provide much peace and a sense of grounding to our community. The loss of the trees feels like a personal loss in my life. I wish the Planners could/would have worked around this annihilation. While I have no answers since what is done is done; I hope the citizens will attend the meeting scheduled for November 9 to help save the lives of these precious trees!

  • Someone please double-check, but I think the City statement indicated the tree removal was to stop at Webb Street… but then we took these pictures of trees cut down between Webb and Lincoln…