Thursday, 24 September 2020
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Trees could be saved - and here’s how

On Saturday, community members were given the reasons why the Scenic Rim Regional Council wants to remove the mature Evergreen Ash trees from High Street.

Chris Bowman, one of the leaders of the petition, and two other community members spoke with Division 5 Councillor, Marshall Chalk.

“He explained why each of the trees was going to be removed,” Chris said.

“Afterwards, we discussed the reasons and we believe we have solutions to offer for each tree.”

The Fassifern Guardian also contacted Cr Chalk and he has since enlarged on the reasons why Council plans to remove the trees, however, Chris has responded saying there were solutions to all the issues raised by Council.

Cr Chalk noted in each instance that the trees are … “exotic and invasive tree species with winged seeds easily dispersed through natural areas.”

However, Chris pointed out that the trees were planted in High Street almost 30 years ago and there is no evidence of them growing in bushland or at the outlets of the stormwater drains.

“Nor is there any evidence of seedling growing in the vicinity of High Street from wind blown seeds,”

In relation to the other reasons put forward by Council for the removal of each trees:

• The tree opposite the Boonah Post Office is to be removed as Council has to move the pedestrian crossing away from the visual obstruction caused by the power pole outside the Post Office.

Cr Chalk: The new pedestrian crossing is wider to meet current standards and must be constructed further to the south than the existing one to have an unobstructed connection to the footpath.

Chris Bowman: It is not necessary to have two pedestrian crossings in close proximity and it would be far more convenient to have a crossing much further south of the High and Park Street intersection. 

Move the pedestrian crossing and leave the tree.

• The tree outside the IGA supermarket.

Cr Chalk: The removal of the tree outside the supermarket also allows for an upgrade to stormwater infrastructure and a PWD (Person With Disability) carpark and wheelchair access designed to current standards.

Chris Bowman: Sacrifice a carpark beside the current PWD carpark to achieve the same end.

• The tree outside Glen’s Diner 

Cr Chalk: The removed tree also allows for a PWD carpark and wheelchair access designed to current standards.

Chris Bowman: Again, sacrifice a carpark beside the current PWD carpark to achieve the same end. However, we were told it was to be removed to make a larger public space and to fit in with the architect’s plans. We would choose the tree over the alrady large space in front of Glen’s Diner.

• The tree in front of Maynard’s Store

Cr Chalk: It is to be removed to allow the kerb to be removed and realigned to provide car parks that are designed to meet current engineering standards.