Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Queens BP Changes Story On Reason For Cherry Tree Destruction

A grove of Cherry Blossom trees were destroyed behind Queens Borough Hall to make way for construction equipment, part of a $ 21 million dollar project to build a glass atrium in the rear courtyard. (Photos: Geoffrey Croft/NYC Park Advocates) Click on images to enlarge.


It seems the Queens Borough Presidents' office can't get its stories straight.

Over the weekend Helen Marshall office insisted to NY1 that only "some" trees were diseased, not all. On Monday however after the story broke in numerous media outlets
the story suddenly changed, according to NY1.

They said the trees were not destroyed because of construction needs but due to disease and it was spreading.

This is a direct contradiction to the weekend statement made to the station where they also said that they did not announce the destruction sooner because they didn't learn they would need to until construction began.

Yesterday the City's Department of Citywide Administrative Services, which owns the land, was asked to provide tree inspection reports to back-up its claims that the trees were in fact "diseased." Those reports have not yet been made available.

Read/View More:

NY1 News - April 2, 2012 - By CeFaan Kim

A Walk In The Park - April 1, 2012 - By Geoffrey Croft


  1. This tree debacle by the BP, NYC DCAS and their architect/engineers is not surprising. But what is troubling is that this flies in the face of the Mayoral PlaNYC 2030 that calls for many things including an increase in vitally needed tree canopy. Here we have irreplaceable shade trees blatantly removed (its diseased stupid! propaganda) and other large trees by the absence of protection to be damaged beyond repair. Only to decline, die or maybe even fail in years thereafter. One step forward two steps back. Thats NYC government for ya-

  2. Thanks for your blog. Most trees in the city are not perfect and can live for many years with some disease or fungus or other pathogens. The question is whether the trees are unsafe and only a consulting arborist can determine this. I seriously doubt such an arborist's report will be found for these trees. Flowering cherries are notorious for relatively short lives, say 50 years versus hundreds for oaks. They should always be kept as long as they provide beauty and function and are not dangerous. This project is typical of what happens when arborists and green advocates are kept out of the closed loop of planners, politicians and engineers.




    I don't know if you've seen the above new study, but it's rather more objective than Mayor Bloomberg about how well greening is going in this city. The study analyzes New York and twenty other cities and finds our urban forests are shrinking by four million trees a year. Sadly, Helen Marshall and DCAS are not an anomaly.