Sunday, October 13, 2019

Replace Our Trees -- Attend the program, Sign the petition

In recent years, the City of Middletown has lost trees at a much faster rate than the city has planted new trees. To address this issue, the Jonah Center for Earth and Art and the City of Middletown’s Urban Forestry Commission invite the public to a special meeting on Tuesday, October 15, 7-8:30 p.m. in the Middletown’s Council Chambers, 245 deKoven Drive.
The Jonah Center is also gathering signatures on a petition in preparation for the city’s budget hearings in the spring. We plan to ask for at least $50,000 in additional funds to support an increase in tree-planting from 20-30 trees per year to at least 100 trees per year. Read more and sign the petition here.


Anonymous said...

Five or six trees were recently planted at the north end of the new rarely used walk/bike path at Wadsworth St and Long Lane. Two are planted in the shade of existing woodlands. Is this an example of irresponsible planting for the expanded program? There was no need to plant those trees. Shall we waste an additional $50k?

Catherine Johnson said...

I would disagree with you on that last remark: $50K for trees would not be wasted. In fact, it sounds like you are unaware of how much work trees do. This investment would actually save us money. Planting a $100 tree now will come back to us in terms of reducing the heat island effect, help process stormwater, shade pedestrians and cyclists, reduce snowfall on streets for the first few inches, and brighten our spirits.

The design of the corner of Wadsworth Street/Long Hill Rd is odd. There should have been street planted between the sidewalk and roadbed on the entire street as part of the project, and at the corner, the two benches don't really make sense there - they would have been better used across the street. No design expertise on staff to evaluate how things are sewn together. This is seen in several spots around town. We need an editor for the public space.

Tree Fanatic said...

I hate to sound defensive, but feel the need to state that the "five or six trees" were part of the design by the engineering firm that managed the trail installation. The Middletown Urban Forestry Commission is supposed to be consulted on tree plantings throughout the City. The Public Works Department brings us their projects for review in most cases -- this one seems to have slipped through, perhaps because the trees were not a big part of the plan.
As chairman of the Commission, I spend much time and personal money staying educated about the best trees to plant for long-term benefits. The public is welcome to attend Urban Forestry Commission meetings on the 4th Thursday of the month. Last evening's event put on by the Jonah Center for Earth and Art and the Urban Forestry Commission was very educational and the video of the evening will be available on the City's website soon.