North Carolina Donald Ross municipal course could have 157 trees removed under new plan

ASHEVILLE, N.C.  — A city evaluation recommends the removal of 157 oak, cherry and pine trees at the historic Asheville Municipal Golf Course, an action staff says is necessary for essential renovations to the course, improvements to golf play and longevity of existing trees.

While Chris Corl, the city’s director of Community and Regional Entertainment Facilities, said this estimate is a low number compared to its initial U.S. Golf Association tree evaluation and report, which suggested 500-plus trees for removal, some members of the Urban Forestry Commission, area residents and environmentalists urge the city to reject the plan and call for further review.

At its Dec. 6 meeting, the Urban Forestry Commission approved a series of four recommendations to be sent to Asheville City Council, Corl’s department and course manager Commonwealth Gold Partners – II Asheville LLC.

Three people spoke during public comment to advocate for saving the trees, questioning both the report and viability of the removal plan, and the commission received around 80 written comments, many with similar messages, said Chair Amy Smith.

Among those to speak was Nancy Casey, who has helped rally support around the course’s trees, including the creation of a Facebook page, and said while she is in support of restoring “our beloved Muni golf course,” she was also hopeful that the city could come up with a “a revised tree plan that emphasizes tree trimming over tree cutting, and better reflects our community values on saving mature trees.”

Recommendations made by the commission included calls for a certified arborist, independent of the project, to do another review of all trees slated for removal using an industry tree risk assessment standard; a specific and detailed replanting plan, including species and abundance; information on soil testing, use of herbicides and other chemicals; and further exploration of alternates to removal, including pruning and other practices.

The motion passed unanimously among the six members present.

Though any future tree removal does not necessarily require City Council approval, Corl said if council decided to add the issue to an upcoming agenda and change the scope, or pump the brakes, they could.

The Urban Forestry Commission does not have the power to reject the project, but they can offer recommendations and insight.

Asheville Municipal Golf CourseRead More

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By: Sarah Honosky
Title: North Carolina Donald Ross municipal course could have 157 trees removed under new plan
Sourced From: golfweek.usatoday.com/2022/12/08/north-carolina-donald-ross-municipal-course-trees-removed/
Published Date: Thu, 08 Dec 2022 11:54:29 +0000

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