Letter to the Editor: 104 Trees to be cut down for WSDOT frontage project Permit 19-2371

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Trees on Dayton by WSDOT project. Photo by Jamie Holter

To the Editor:

The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) recently hosted a meeting for Save Shoreline Trees. While we appreciated this opportunity to hear directly from WSDOT and City representatives, we cannot condone the fact that 104 trees including several Landmark trees are going to be cut down as part of the frontage renovation on Dayton Ave N, N 155th and N 160th. WSDOT provided information that so many trees "were saved," but do not be misled, trees have not been "saved".

Save Shoreline Trees wants the larger Shoreline community and friends of trees to know this will be a travesty when these 104 trees are cut down as part of the WSDOT frontage renovation triggered by city code. The meeting with WSDOT was too short and we were not able to ask all of our questions. We were not able to ask about the confusion of who "owns" what trees.

Now, apparently, all of the trees along N 160th and N 155th are owned by WSDOT, a remarkable confusion in information provided by the City and WSDOT to the community in December 2019.

In the "Table of Trees" attached to WSDOT's revised arborist report dated 7/7/20, it identifies each tree and reads "remove", "remove", "remove" which means "cut down" "cut down" "cut down" next to 104 trees. Also, an additional 40 trees will be impacted, meaning these trees might suffer consequences from construction or from nearby trees being cut down.

We are losing our mature tree canopy and will continue to do so. Many improvement projects are scheduled, not only WSDOT, but also on N 175th St corridor, N 148th St Bridge, and numerous construction sites for developments of townhomes and apartments. The tall conifer trees in Shoreline are being cut down, project by project.

So when you see tree service trucks and chippers along Dayton Ave N, along N 160th, along N 155th, hear the whirring pitch of chainsaws, you will know that trees are falling. We will continue to hear these sights and sounds in Shoreline until the residents of Shoreline say to the City of Shoreline, enough is enough. 

These trees are part of the urban tree canopy of Shoreline. These trees are city assets that serve and belong to Shoreline residents. We are saying to all who will listen, these 104 tall trees around WSDOT, each one, is important.

Melody Fosmore, Chair
Kathleen Russell, Communications
Save Shoreline Trees


Jim Hutter August 27, 2020 at 3:22 AM  

WSDOT should just move there headquarters, they obviously can find a place destroyed by their decision making skills somewhere else, they don't belong in Shoreline anymore.

Anonymous,  August 27, 2020 at 5:10 PM  

This is very disappointing, maybe it's time to replace the trees in the city logo with an open check book. That seems to be the primary driver of city planning right now.

Rudy August 28, 2020 at 9:42 AM  

Jim Hutter is right on!

Anonymous,  August 28, 2020 at 10:51 AM  

What can a resident do to support conservation of these trees?

Petitions August 28, 2020 at 11:02 AM  

Not to mention that in this time of global climate change crisis we need every tree and should be planting more not cutting any down.

Anonymous,  August 31, 2020 at 9:19 AM  

What I like is this line: WSDOT frontage renovation triggered by city code.
Shoreline is making this happen not WSDOT. This is going to be a few feet of sidewalk that will not match the rest of Dayton.

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