Letters to the Editor

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METRO PARKS: Leave Ruston Way trees alone

Letter by Karen M. Jeffery, Tacoma on Jan. 19, 2011 at 11:31 am with 6 Comments »
January 19, 2011 12:03 pm

Re: “Attack of the Ruston Way trees” (TNT, 1-19).

Trees do not have an “ugly, sinister side.” When these trees were planted, the goal was to plant full-sized, graceful shade trees, not saplings.

Roots grow. Cracked sidewalks can be made safer with curves and safe rises. When new sidewalks were put in across from my house, s-curves were put in to accommodate the rising roots.

Yes, some remedies cost money, but so does tree removal and replanting. Sidewalks can meander and needn’t be in straight lines.

Leave the trees. We needn’t always rid ourselves of things that present a bit of problem. Or we’d be putting senior citizens like myself on ice flows.

Leave a comment Comments → 6
  1. omega629 says:

    I dont think you understand the logistics of this problem. These trees will continue to grow and cause more damage. The trees are a cancer and will have to removed sooner or later. What gets me is how the city 30 years ago thought it would be a great idea to plant these trees next to a sidewalk to begin with. Where is the city planning??

  2. MarksonofDarwin says:

    A few years back, we had a family outing walking Ruston Way. All of a sudden, we heard a huge *crack* and one of those trees broke nearly in half. It missed someone walking their dog by a couple feet. It made the sidewalk impassable. Crews showed up fairly quickly to remove this hazard, but it could have been much worse.

    I know that trees are generally desirable, but if they’re planted in the wrong place, they become a nuisance.

  3. crazyrusty says:

    Trees?? In the Northwest?? WTF!

    I compeltely agree with omega and MarksonofDarwin, trees are a danger to everyone. Hell, just last night after I left the bar a tree jumped out in front of me and I almost hit it! While we’re on the subject, wtf is up with there being dirt and grass in parks? It rains quite a bit here, does the city not know that when dirt and rain combine it makes mud? Pave it all!

  4. crusty – did you stop reading MoD’s post before you got to the eleven words?

    I will repeat them:

    “if they’re planted in the wrong place, they become a nuisance.”

  5. Karen,

    it’s very sweet (and somewhat naive) that you want to just “leave the trees alone”

    The fact is, they were the wrong species of tree planted in a space that would not sustain them.

    I was walking down there a few days ago and found the stump of one that had blown over, it took a portion of the side walk and curb with it. Tangled up in it’s cramped roots were the electrical wires for the street lights.

    Yes, it’s unfortunate that the trees have to “suffer” for what was exceptionally poor planning, but something needs to be done.

    I for one would like to see the sidewalk moved in a bit and the planting strip widened to accommodate proper (and sustainable) tree planting.

  6. crazyrusty says:


    Yep, got it. Sarcastic post still applies. According to MoD, there should be a special ‘When Trees Attack’. Whether planted by nature or by man, the trees are not the issue.

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