The freshly paved, unnamed waterfront park at South Adams and Fifth Street in Hoquiam is getting popular with local residents. But some people are wondering what happened to the alder trees, as evidenced by the number of inquiries directed toward Mayor Ben Winkelman.
“I, like others, got upset about that at first,” said Winkelman to the City Council on Monday.
He asked City Administrator Brian Shay to find out why the handful of alder trees that sat between the new lot and waterfront were removed.
“On June 9, the city’s Public Works Department submitted a tree alteration permit to (Shay) and that was for removal of some badly damaged trees in the new park,” said Winkelman. “And by badly damaged, they had trunk decay. If you go down to the park now and see the stumps it’s obvious there was some major decay in the main trunks of those trees.”
Because of the decay, the trees were considered to be “imminent hazards” because of their proximity to parking stalls and some new benches that are going in, so the permit was granted for the four clumps of alders growing there, said Winkelman.
“I personally really liked them out there, but I understand why they had to come down for safety concerns,” said Winkelman.
There will be new trees planted, according to Winkelman.
“We’re planning on having our Arbor Day celebration at the park in September, so we’ll be planting several new trees in that location,” he said. “We’ll make sure they are appropriate and healthy and provide much waterfront beauty over the years.”