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Apart from the 3 trees in Ivanhoe Street, there is also a Fig tree up for removal in Steele Park Marrickville South. I received the following information about this tree. Unfortunately, this tree should be removed as it will become dangerous. Thankfully, it will be replaced with a Moreton Bay Fig. Thanks to Marrickville Council for the following information.
The removal of the tree is necessary as there has been a failure of one of multiple trunks attached at ground level. All of these trunks have major inclusions associated with a large amount of end-weight producing a significant lever-arm stress. This was the cause of failure of the subject trunk. Additionally the failure exposed a large amount of root crown decay at & below ground level.
The present structural defects associated with the root crown decay & the exposure to further decay by way of the large wound make the retention of the tree unmanageable. The tree is close enough to no. 16 Thornley St for it to present an unacceptable risk of failure & property damage at some point in the future. It is proposed to be replaced with a Moreton Bay Fig of size 100L or greater.
Don’t forget, the deadline for submissions regarding the 3 street trees in Ivanhoe Street Marrickville South closes this coming Monday 8th March. Please send in a submission asking these trees be retained if you agree. You can read about them here -http://savingourtrees.wordpress.com/2010/02/27/4-trees-up-for-removal-in-marrickville-south/
The post contains a hyperlink directly to council’s web-site where you can write your submission.
I ask that you put in a submission even if the trees are not located near you. All tree removal has an impact on the green canopy of Marrickville LGA. This month it’s Marrickville South, next month it may be Camperdown, Newtown or Dulwich Hill.
Just last month, Marrickville Council put up their Tree Strategy Issues Paper for the Councillors to vote on. Had they voted to pass the paper, we would now be losing 1,000 mature trees a year for the next 5 years.
A pie chart in the document showed Council wants to remove 59% of the public trees across Marrickville LGA. I was shocked when I read this.
The Tree Strategy Issues Paper is to return to the Councillors for voting 5 or so months from now. If Council thought it was reasonable to recommend the removal of 59% of its trees, I would think it is likely they will continue to push for a great percentage to be removed. If this is indeed what happens, the community will be required to put in many submissions if we want a chance of retaining these trees.
It would be great if we supported each street, each area when each comes under threat, even if we don’t live there, because the lumberjacks will be in your area & perhaps your street eventually. This is one issue where the community could seriously help & benefit each other without much time & effort.
A submission need not be a large document. It can be a few lines, a paragraph or more & you can write whatever you want. I have noticed that submissions received from the community are taken seriously both by Council staff & the Councillors.
If just 1% of the LGA sent in a submission, not only would we probably set a record for mail submissions, we would also probably rewrite the agenda when it comes to greening the LGA.
If we do nothing, then we are going to be living in an area where 59% of our trees will be gone, which will affect us in many ways (see the pages 100 Tree Facts & About Street Trees on this site for more information about this).
Another serious effect of denuding the LAG of mature trees is our urban wildlife who will be drastically affected. Much of the current trees do not provide food or shelter for them. I doubt they could withstand the removal of so many trees. Imagine no birds, except maybe the resiliant Indian Mynas. Imagine no possums.
We went to Berowra Waters today, which required driving up the Pacific Highway. The last time I did this I wrote about the street trees. This time I wanted to see specifically what the differences were between the Pacific Highway & the sections of Princes Highway & Parramatta Road in Marrickville LGA.
There were a number of noteworthy differences. The Pacific Highway has thousands of street trees along its length. A significant number of these trees are Eucalypts. They cascade over the highway, many having branches which cross over 3 lanes & sometimes as far as the opposite side of the highway.
Bottle Brushes are not the dominant street tree, with most trees being of a taller growing species. Many of the street trees are 1/3 higher than the power poles & thick trunks are quite common.
Far less than 50% of the trees have trunks that are as thin as an upper arm. Many street trees were planted around 3 metres apart, which helped create a decent canopy. Most of the trees have a natural shape & I did not see a single tree in a cage even within the shopping strips
The street trees planted in shopping strips spilled out from under the awnings & loomed over the highway. Naturally to achieve this they did not have straight trunks & they have not removed because of this.
Much of the Pacific Highway has a grass verge with a narrow footpath. Only the shopping strips are paved or cemented. The grass verge serves to soften the environment, which is quite an achievement considering the Pacific Highway is one of the top 10 heavily trafficked roads in Australia. I watched the verge of the Highway for its length wondering how they were managing with far less cement. I noticed the footpaths were narrower than in the Inner West & many trees hung over the path requiring any pedestrians to either duck or weave their way around the tree. I actually saw this happen & it appeared to cause no difficulty for the pedestrian who was a woman over 50. So very different from here, where just last week a council worker took to our fence with a whipper-snipper to hack away 20 centimetres of errant camellia which protruded out from under the fence. Considering the footpath outside our fence is a wide one for the area, I thought this was overkill.
So do we sanitise & control nature more than they do on Sydney’s North Shore? I think we do.
In direct opposition is our section of the Princes Highway & Parramatta Road, both of which are an eye-sore in my opinion. The Princes Highway cannot possibly get uglier & being so close to the airport, it is one of the gateways to Sydney. The roads directly surrounding the airport were heavily planted with street trees, shrubs & flowers for the 2000 Olympics. In the main, they still look good & are maintained by Botany Council. I doubt once the visitor leaves these roads & comes to the Princes Highway that they will have a favourable impression of the area. The Princes Highway is in the main a worship of cement. Soot stained, dirty cement. One can count the street trees & they are a sad, straggly lot. There is a gross lack of green infrastructure. This changes when the Princes Highway comes under the jurisdiction of City of Sydney Council at one end & Rockdale Council at the other. For a green council, Marrickville seems to be ignoring this stretch of highway.
The same can be said for Parramatta Road, which is stark in its lack of green infrastructure, though it is slightly less ugly than the Princes Highway because of the type of grey infrastructure (some may debate this). Again, Leichhardt Council & City of Sydney Council have planted threes where Parramatta Road comes under their control, though City of Sydney Council has done far more work & planted many more street trees. If City of Sydney, Rockdale & Leichhardt Councils can plant street trees along these main roads, why can’t Marrickville Council?
Why do we need so much cement? Trees help the longevity of grey infrastructure like cement footpaths because their shade protects from the harsh sun. We also know that roofs, roads & footpaths cause the heat island effect & trees lower this. Temperatures can be 9 degrees cooler in the shade of a tree.
The North Shore is deemed classier. I think this is not because of the housing stock, but because of the plentiful tall trees & the significant green canopy. Friends have told me they moved to the North Shore because of the trees. Balmain & Paddington were built as working class suburbs as were those in Marrickville LGA, yet both these suburbs are regarded as better suburbs & their properties are generally worth more. Why? Is it the presence of water? Being close to the city? Perhaps, but Marrickville LGA is also close to the city & has its own beautiful Cooks River.
I think it is because of the trees. On the drive back from Hornsby, the closer you get to Marrickville the more you notice the trees thin out, get shorter, look less healthy & street tree after street tree have been severely hacked. The trees on the North Shore aren’t hacked in this way.
Marrickville Council wants to remove another 2 exceptionally beautiful, tall street trees. The first tree is a Silky Oak (Grevillea robusta) outside 18 Merton Street Petersham. This species is native to NSW & QLD, is considered rare & its timber is valuable. It produces prolific flowers providing food for nectar-eating birds.
Marrickville Council gives the following reasons for its removal: 1. Residents concerns about continuing damage to private properties & underground services. 2. Residents request. 3. Tree was not planted by Council. 4. Alternative solutions have been considered but are not practical in this case.
The tree is beautiful. Unfortunately, someone has built up the ground around the trunk & put in a garden bed burying up to 30 cm of the trunk. Because the tree is mature, it has developed a root system where 1 root is on the surface of the ground & probably disrupted the cement footpath. It is hard to say because the footpath has been removed.
There are a few small cracks along the bottom of the brick fence of the property near the tree. The fence appears to me to be as old as the house, probably built in the early 1900s. Council can adapt a new cement footpath to accommodate the exposed root or cover the lot with permeable material, routinely used by Councils on the North Shore where they do anything to save trees like this. To say “alternative solutions are not practical in this case” is surprising. Council can also snip off the top of this tree to prevent it from growing taller.
According to research by Trees for the Future, a 10-year-old Grevillia robusta, 45 feet tall with a trunk 6 inches (15.24 cm) in diameter would sequester & store 29.3 kg (64.6 lbs) Carbon Dioxide (CO2) per year. http://www.treesftf.org/resources/Calculating CO2 Sequestration by Trees.pdf
The trunk of the Merton Street tree measures 107cm (42 inches). Its diameter is 34 cm (13.38 inches), which equates to approximately 64.46 kg CO2 storage per year.
The DEADLINE for submissions is 28 October 09. Council plan to cut this tree down on 8th November 09.
The 2nd tree is located outside 139 Cambridge Street Stanmore. It is a mature Lemon Scented Gum (Corymbia Citriodora). Council gives the following reasons for its removal: 1. Residents concerns about continuing damage to private properties & underground services. 2. Unsuitable species for this location.
This tree is a prime example of a tree that should be on a Register of Significant Trees, except Marrickville Council doesn’t have one. True, it does butt up against the kerb & the footpath. It should. It is probably about 100 years old.
Cambridge Street has numerous old & tall trees & this is reflected in high property values in the area. We went after it had been raining & the air smelt lovely. The loss of this tree will have a massive impact on the streetscape. The residents are worried about this tree & don’t want to see it chopped down. One resident expressed fear that, once Council removes this tree, they will go after other trees in the street.
To their credit, Council have commissioned an independent report evaluating whether to install a root-barrier to limit & control root growth so as to protect property & infrastructure damage. I sincerely hope they choose this option.
The trunk of the Cambridge Street tree measures 2.5 metres (100 inches). Its diameter is 79.5 cm & equates to approximately 388.2 kg CO2 storage per year.
The DEADLINE for submissions is 26th October 09. Council plan cut down this tree on 9th November 09.
Because these 2 trees have large trunks, all attempts should be made to keep them for the following reasons, especially in these days of climate change:
- 452.5 kg CO2 is sequestered & stored each year by these 2 trees.
- Almost ½ tonne of CO2 taken out of the atmosphere per year is something we should do everything possible to retain. Planting a new tree is unlikely to make any meaningful impact for many years & is very dependent on what species of tree is planted. Marrickville Council is planting Ornamental Cherry trees (Prunus) as replacement trees for many of the large trees that have been removed. Prunus are small trees with thin trunks & branches. They are not native & do not produce food for birds.
Both the Merton & Cambridge Street trees, being large truck trees, provide immense financial & physical benefit to the community. Large street trees increase property values between 7-26%. One only need look at the Cambridge Street tree to recognize its positive financial impact. Both these trees have a major visual impact on the streetscape.
These trees will be chopped down unless the community moves to save them. If you want to save these two trees you will need to:
- Send a submission to Marrickville Council by e-mail or post before the submission deadline. firstname.lastname@example.org or Citizens’ Service Centre PO Box 14 Petersham NSW 2049. It is important to send your submission to each Councillor as well. You can access their contact details by going to the ‘Councillor Contact’ page located in the left hand column.
- These 2 trees are in North Ward. It is usually beneficial to make phone contact with Councillors. The Councillors for North Ward are Deputy Mayor Fiona Byrne (s (Greens), Clr Cathy Peters (Greens) & Clr Laura Wright (ALP).
- If you are pressed for time, you can write to me at email@example.com & I will send you a submission to which you can add your name & send off or use as a base to write your own.
- You can also write to both the Inner West Courier & The Valley Times local newspapers. The Cambridge Street tree may interest the Sydney Morning Herald.
- I would recommend local residents asking the local newspapers to write an article about these trees. If you need help with this, please contact me.
- Attend the Council Meeting when the fate of these trees will be decided. The community can speak at these meetings.
- Peaceful community protest can also be effective. The Mackey Park Fig trees are a recent example. Their story can be read on this website.
I will be posting updates regularly. Let’s hope we can save them. Jacqueline