Photo by Emma Kirkemier/Messenger
Downtown Gadsden, Inc. and the City of Gadsden are partnering to address 23 high-risk trees located along Broad Street. After a tree recently fell on Broad Street, DGI contracted local ISA Master Arborist Lee McBride to survey the 83 trees in the downtown area.
“We have a beautiful downtown, and our trees are an important part of the scenery,” said DGI executive director Kay Moore. “The necessary removal of the diseased and affected trees will change the current landscape, but we have plans to recreate an even better visual space. It will take a while, but we believe that our streetscape will be even more beautiful than it is now. We appreciate everyone’s patience as we work through the necessary process.”
The “high-risk” label for trees is a result of severe leaning due to unbalanced crowns, paver grates that have had a negative impact and caused damage to the trunk or other reasons. As a result, city workers will began removing the affected trees this past week.
“In order to support the growth of downtown, we need to remove these unsafe trees,” said Gadsden Mayor Craig Ford. “With warming weather, more shoppers and diners will soon be out and about. The downside of warmer weather is that wind and storms make each tree more hazardous. Once the high-risk trees are safely removed, we can then reimagine the streetscape and work toward a more beautiful Broad Street.”
According to the assessment, the 400 block has the most trees deemed high risk with eight, followed by the 500 block with six, the 600 block with three and the 100 block with two.