PATH trail at Green Street in Oakhurst temporarily closed for tree removalThe path trail at Green Street in Oakhurst has been closed. Photo provided by Tonio Andrade
Decatur, GA – Decatur residents report that the PATH trail at Green Street in Oakhurst is temporarily closed for tree removal.
The closure may last until June, the city’s arborist said.
The work is part of the Green Street sewer upgrade project. The city of Decatur’s arborist said the tree removals have been approved and DeKalb County Watershed Management started removing the trees today, March 30.
The total length of piping to be replaced is about 1,800 feet. Approximately 20 workers were on the site according to reader Tonio Andrade.
He said he could hear workers firing up the chainsaws.
“It’s a lovely area, and I think neighbors would be worried to hear that a bunch of trees were to be knocked down, especially without any kind of input or information,” Andrade said. “I may have missed something.”
Wendy Vance, who lives nearby, said that people staying home due to the COVID-19 pandemic were using that trail for exercise. Now people living near the trail must listen to workers sawing down trees along the trail while they’re sheltering in place.
“This is unbelievably bad timing and should be even worse press for Dekalb County Watershed, as if they need worse publicity,” Vance said.
She sent in this video from the scene:
City Arborist Kay Evanovich said she is monitoring the situation and said residents did get a heads up.
“They placed door hangers in the neighborhood near the work last week,” Evanovich said. “They will be removing only trees along the sewer easement that have roots impacted over 25 percent and have a good native tree plant-back plan as well. They will be pipe bursting to save big specimen size trees along Green Street. I will be monitoring the workers to make sure they are practicing social distancing and only removing the trees that were approved to be removed. I will also be monitoring the plant-back project later this year.”
She said crews will remove a total of 19 trees from the East Davis side of the trail. The trees are between 6-inches and 28-inches in diameter at breast height.
“Due to them being able to use the pipe-bursting method along the Green Street portion of the sewer that will save 12 additional trees that would have had to be removed including three specimen trees: a 30-inch Tulip Poplar, a 36-inch Pine and a 56-inch Tulip Poplar,” Evanovich said.
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