On Thursday, July 5, the certified arborist was on-site monitoring during the concrete curb/asphalt removal activities around two street trees in Segment #9 of the Downtown Sidewalk project.
Tree #1 is located on the east side of Main Street/Hwy 101 south of Sherwood Road and north of State Street. Tree #1 is near the old Starchild Chocolate storefront. This tree had a significant amount of browning/dead leaves and branch tips
Tree #2 is located south of State Street and North of Commercial Street on the east side of Main Street/Hwy 101. This tree is in front of The House Doctor Paints store. This tree was in poor health with decay observed in some of the branches and a large old wound with decay on the trunk.
It was identified that the new curb will need to be installed through almost the center of Tree # 1’s trunk. Removal of the existing concrete sidewalk and curb around Tree # 1 also exposed a large anchor root that was running parallel to the existing curb that will need to be cut for the installation of the new curb.
During the removal of the concrete sidewalk and curb around Tree # 2, a significant amount of small feeder roots and a number of larger roots were exposed and severed. Further, the existing curb was deeper than typical and the tree was found to lack anchor roots down to sub-grade on this east side of the tree due to the presence of the
deep curb. When the curb was removed, the entire tree shook, indicating potential instability and a structural integrity concern.
The arborist determined these two trees needed to be removed.
Following the tree removal protocol, the City of Willits and City Planner, Dusty Duley were notified. The City reviewed the arborist report and agreed with the recommendation to remove the two trees. They city said they appreciated the effort from Caltrans and Granite to work carefully around the trees.
Both trees are scheduled to be removed Tuesday, July 10.
From the arborist’s report:
Since the new curb alignment will need to cut though the base of Tree #1, this tree will need to be removed.
Due to the significant loss of feeder roots, the potential impacts to the structural integrity of the tree from the curb removal and the presence of existing decay in the tree trunk, it is recommended that Tree# 2 be removed. Since the tree is already unhealthy from the past trunk damage and subsequent decay that spread through the trunk, the impacts from the ground disturbing activities will put too much additional strain on the tree to recuperate in the long term and in order to avoid the inevitable risk of tree failure causing damage to infrastructure or pedestrians, the removal of this tree is recommended.“