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Developer to plant trees in and next to city park

City hall has reached a deal about tree removals and plantings with the developer of a new commercial plaza next to Royal City Park.
This fall, 12 new trees will be planted in Royal City Park and another 19 will be planted on the site of the new 37,700-sq.-ft. plaza now being built at 40 Wellington St. W., said a city news release.
It said 25 new trees will also be planted on city-owned lands as part of a compensation package the city will receive from the plaza developer after the removal of 20 unhealthy park trees.
City staff worked closely with a certified arborist and with the developer, Belmont Equity Partners, to conduct a root investigation of park trees located close to the construction site, Karen Sabzali, the city’s manager of parks and open space, said in the release.
The arborist’s report recommended the removal of two silver and 13 Norway maples that are over 10 centimetres in diameter at breast height. “Reasons cited include broken branches, multi-stemmed, severely fence ingrown, leaning into development site, open wounds, and stem or basal decay,” the release said.
Five Norway maples less than 10 centimetres in diameter at breast height, which are in poor condition and conflict with a trail connection, have also been recommended for removal, it said. In their place, the developer will plant a new shrub bed to soften sightlines between the plaza and park.
“Removal of unhealthy trees is an important part of park maintenance and it protects public safety,” Sabzali said. “It is also important the new trees are planted in areas that will ensure proper growth and longevity.”

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