Bulldozers roared across the landscape of parking lot B on April 13 as they demolished eight trees that were on the site of the future parking structure.
The trees have been removed from the lot to make way for two lanes coming in and two lanes coming out. Kindra Girard, a biology professor, identified the trees as being a type of conifer, or pine.
They are not locally protected species, which include sycamore and oak trees. The trees are neither rare nor indigenous to the area, and Girard expressed that in her opinion, wildlife would be minimally impacted by their removal.
Bill Taylor, Director of Business Services, stated that the the trees created a potential safety hazard as they blocked the line of vision for motorists using the traffic lanes on Mountain Ave. They were also infested with pine beetles, and their treatment was becoming expensive. “We do not have enough in the budget to treat these trees anymore,” said Taylor. He added that new landscaping will replace the trees that have been removed.
While some students are upset at the loss of trees others are enthusiastic about the introduction of the traffic lanes. “It will help because parking’s already hectic and the more room, the better,” said Cassy Vasile, 18.
The Honors Biology Club shared a different perspective on the issue. Many students were upset and disturbed at the loss of the trees.
“I don’t feel good. Even if it isn’t a native tree there’s life that shouldn’t be disturbed,” said Elana Shebani, 21. Leranik Honarchian, 19, and the Honors Biology Club president, was in agreement with her fellow club member regarding the loss of the trees.
Judging from a recent flurry of campus e-mails, many people have conflicting feelings regarding the fate of the trees that are now gone.