Tree Warden Rules on Trees Eversource Sought to Remove in Vicinity of Riverside Train Station


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The Town of Greenwich Tree Warden on Tuesday announced his decision on the fate of numerous trees proposed to be removed, including 21 in the area of the Riverside Train Station. Other trees are in the area of Cos Cob Park, Arch Street Y Summit and Sound beach Ave at the Old Greenwich Train Station for a total of 29 trees.

After the trees were posted, complaints were received, triggering a public hearing on May 26.

At the hearing, Kathy Ferrier, Transmission Vegetation Manager for Eversource said all 29 trees needing to be removed in order to achieve a 25 foot clearance from the transmission lines. She said any new vegetation could not exceed 15 ft. in height.

“Existing listed vegetation is currently in one of three conditions; being pruned cyclically away from wires, physiologically improbable to grow large enough to reach any high wires or is much too young at this stage of structural development to cause any service disruptions,” Kramer said on Tuesday.

The 21 trees posted at Riverside Train station:

  • Four (4) Arborviteas (Thuja occidentalis) Diameter Breast Height of 12, 12, 12, and 8 inches.
  • Seven (7) Norway Maples (Acer plantanoides) DBH of 24, 12, 12, 12, 12, 12, 15 inches
  • Three (3) Callery Pears (Pyrus calleryana) DBH of 24, 20, 20 inches
  • One (1) Red Cedar (Juniperus virginiana) DBH of 6 inches
  • One (1) Japanese Falsecypress (Cedar), (Chamaecyparis pisifera) DBH of 22 inches
  • Two (2) Flowering Cherry Plums (Prunus cerasifera) DBH of 4, 4 inches
  • Two (2) Black Cherries (Prunus serotine) DBH 12, 12 inches
  • One (1) Norway Spruce (Picea abies) DBH 20 inches

At Cos Cob Park 5 Oak trees were posted.

Arch St and Summit 1 Western Cedar was posted.

Two Japanese Zelkova were posted at the Old Greenwich Train station.

Any party aggrieved by the decision may, within 10 days, appeal the decision to superior court.

The Tree Warden is charged by state statute with the “care and control” of all town-owned trees.

Dr. Kramer ruled that none of the trees may be removed with the exception of the Western Cedar at Arch St and Summit Road and one Norway Maple at the Riverside Train Station.

Further, he said the trees cannot be removed until Eversource submits a landscape plan that includes replacement trees and species.

“The Tree Division doesn’t take this responsibility lightly,” Kramer said. “Each and every tree slated for removal is
inspected and decided on a case-by-case basis.”

“The Greenwich Tree Conservancy is very concerned that Eversource is stating that they need to remove trees ground to sky 25 feet from both sides of their wires,” said JoAnn Messina, director of the Greenwich Tree Conservancy on Tuesday.

“This is not what PURA has agreed to and we need to refute. Many towns in Connecticut are being attacked by Eversource in similar ways,” Messina continued. “In Greenwich, we have been planting “right tree, right place” for decades and these trees requested for removal will not interfere with our power lines. We thank the Tree Warden for his decision to save our important town resources and treasures.”