Trees damaged and left rotting by Superstorm Sandy have finally led to a full response by the Parks Department. The New York Daily News is reporting that the Parks Department is planning to inspect and cut down thousands of trees, not only because they are dying, but because they are endangering residents.
We have previously covered the scores of dead and dying trees left in the wake of Sandy. The prevailing thought is that salt water flooded the root systems of thousands of trees across Southern Brooklyn and other parts of the city, effectively killing them. We recently noted that the Parks Department has already begun the process of removing the damaged trees across Southern Brooklyn including areas along Ocean Parkway, Shore Parkway and the Belt Parkway.
The Parks Department has laid out greater details for their plan to deal with all the salt infected trees. They plan to cut down 2,000 trees of the 45,000 they have inspected earlier in the year. They also plan to re-inspect another 4,500 in the fall. As for replacing the trees, the Parks Department said they would wait until spring’s planting season before gauging their plans. Meghan Lalor, a Parks Department spokeswoman, listed higher priorities before they launch a full scale re-planting.
“In the interim, we have been and will continue to remediate soil, as necessary, with compost and gypsum – both mitigate salt damage – to encourage the return of healthy biological functioning,” Lalor told the Daily News.
Chuck Reichenthal, the district manager for Community Board 13, covering Coney Island and Brighton Beach, was sad to see the trees go but said it was important nonetheless.
“It is a very sad time because these trees have been here for so long, but it is a necessity for safety,” Reichenthal told the Daily News. “Everybody is hoping they make replacements because this is still Brooklyn, and this is where trees are grown.”