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R.I.P. Dear Old Friend

Updated: Aug 10, 2021

It is with sadness that we report that the 75.0 cm Garry Oak tree situated at 468 Head Street was cut down and our community loses yet another specimen from our forest canopy. It was hoped that the Oak would be retained. The developer at the time, Mark Lindholm, indicated that every effort to preserve the tree would be made, however, there was the possibility it may need to be removed if its health and longevity was compromised by the approved development.

During construction of West Bay Quay by the current developer, Tenfold Projects, a certified arborist was brought in to evaluate the structure of the tree noting that it had been impacted by BC Hydro pruning, resulting in an asymmetric canopy. Because of the proximity of the Oak to the proposed underground parkade as well as the planned sidewalk, and curb and gutter installation, it was recommended that the tree be removed because, in the arborist’s opinion, it would over time become a hazard tree if left in place. A replacement tree will be planted in that location in the future.

We are unfortunately losing more and more of our larger urban trees due to development. Trees provide many benefits including reducing heat in the summer months and providing shade, filtering air pollution, generating oxygen, offering habitat for birds and other wildlife, reducing water runoff and adding beauty and grace to our built environment. Unfortunately many of the replacement trees that are planted are not of the large, older variety and do not provide the same benefits as those we have lost.

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