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Pasadena's Shady Trees May Get Reprieve

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Earlier this month the Pasadena City Council voted to approve a plan to "remove 43 mature trees from along Colorado Boulevard-as well as side streets between Lake Avenue and Los Robles Boulevard" and replace them with younger trees that would cause less damage to city sidewalks. The plan, endorsed by local businesses, may not get the go ahead after all, and now the "item is again up for discussion at next Monday's council meeting, and email between the public and council members (passed on to the Star News) suggests that some council members may be rethinking their votes," reports the Star-News blog Under the Dome.

Feedback on the plan indicates that the ficus trees, which "drop messy seed pods," also happen to provide an important service for locals in Pasadena's often blistering sun: Shade for pedestrians. Under the Dome explains:

The concerns seem to be 1) palm trees are a terrible idea because they don't offer any shade to Colorado 2) the ficus trees are beautiful and people don't want to see them go and 3) gingko trees, slated to replace the ficus, are not big enough and don't grow fast enough to offer a lot of shade

The Council initially balked at the suggestion of exploring an alternative tree to put in for fear it would further delay the replacement process, but it seems now a delay is imminent.Ficus trees versus urban planning has a legacy in LA County. Remember those frickin' Ficuses in Santa Monica? (They got the ax.)