Letter writer: South Slope trees should be preserved from development

About 70 trees are scheduled to be cut down in the South Slope neighborhood to make way for a new apartment building. Courtesy of Inge Durre

A stand of about 70 tall, beautiful old trees on the South Slope of Asheville is in danger of being removed. It is one of the last, if not the very last, undeveloped wooded areas in this part of downtown.

The trees are tall enough that you can see them from various vantage points several blocks away, including from the intersection of Patton and Coxe avenues, overarching the surrounding tall buildings. The trees provide valuable green space to this up-and-coming part of town, and they serve as a habitat for songbirds that entertain passers-by and residents of neighboring apartment buildings with their beautiful melodies.

The trees are projected to be felled to make room for a six-story, 48-unit apartment building, including a two-level, partially underground parking garage. The proposed building would take up almost the entire lot, propped up by two-story-high retaining walls replacing the wooded slopes on the west and south sides. This will be an irreversible act and an irreplaceable loss of green space for downtown. It is sad to see this happening in front of our eyes in Asheville.

When contacted about this imminent great loss, several City Council members, a representative of the city Tree Commission, the Downtown Commission, [Downtown Asheville Residential Neighbors], PARC, Asheville GreenWorks and the Sierra Club all stayed silent or commented that they do not see a need or way to prevent the removal of the trees. Various city offices and the Downtown Commission have already approved the projected apartment complex.

Is that what we, the citizens of Asheville, want to allow silently? Surely, there must be a way to preserve this valuable stand of old, tall trees. Can we pull together a group of individuals and organizations for the preservation of this piece of undeveloped nature? We challenge all readers of this opinion letter to speak up! We hope so!

— Inge and Imke Durre
Asheville

SHARE
About Letters
We want to hear from you! Send your letters and commentary to letters@mountainx.com

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.