Letter: About those downtown trees

Graphic by Lori Deaton

I just wanted to comment on Polly McDaniel’s response to the removal of trees along Haywood Street [“Goodbye to Haywood Street Trees,” April 1, Xpress]. Funny how the roots weren’t removed. I guessed that had nothing to do with streetscape and infrastructure.

It does seem odd that the trees were removed from spots that homeless people cool off at or take shelter to wait for the bus. Will there be a bus enclosure put in [in front of the library]? The odd thing is this happened on Patton, right in front of the Western Carolina Rescue Mission.

When the tourists do come back, maybe Malaprop’s can sell sunscreen to them so they will not get sunburn looking at their cell phones for directions.

— Jessica Blackford

Editor’s note: Xpress contacted city spokeswoman Polly McDaniel with a summary of the letter writer’s points, and we received the following response: “Removal of the tree roots will take place in a later phase of the Haywood Streetscape project, during excavation for utility and sidewalk reconstruction. The project expands public sidewalk space and provides additional opportunities for seating and shade. This is especially the case in the area outside of the library, where residents from the Vanderbilt Apartments and others sit to relax, socialize or wait for the bus. In that area, the sidewalk will be expanded significantly and include seven trees in place of the three that were removed. In addition, five benches will be installed, and open areas will be available for people in wheelchairs to sit. More information about the project, including the public input process that informed the design, is available at www.ashevillenc.gov/haywoodstreetscape.”


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One thought on “Letter: About those downtown trees

  1. indy499

    Nice snarky letter, Jessica. Always assume some negative agenda anytime a project is undertaken. Always assume big government/business is out to get the homeless. Always get some tourist dig in.

    Near perfect.

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