Thursday, October 4, 2012

Glendale Blvd & Bancroft: Heritage Coast Live Oaks Cut Down On Vacant Lots, Possibly Without Permits*

CORRECTION 10-11-12: It appears these are not native Coast Live Oak Trees, click here for update.
Photo: Andrew Sears, October 4, 2012.  Sears sent me these photos today.  Yesterday, some huge Coast Live Oaks (a protected native tree) were cut down in vacant lots on the corner of Glendale Blvd & Bancroft.  (Click on photos to enlarge.) 

Photo: Andrew Sears, October 4, 2012.  We don't know whether they trimmed this tree badly on purpose or in stupidity.  Today, it's dangerously balanced and will have to be cut down, or it might fall into Glendale Blvd directly below. 
Photo: Andrew Sears, October 4, 2012.  The Coast Live Oak (the same one from the previous photo) has been holding up the slope above Glendale Blvd for decades.  I think I've even seen it in photos from the 1930s. 
Photo: Andrew Sears, October 4, 2012.  These vacant lots have been on the market for a long time.  We checked ZIMAS and Building & Safety for 2246 W. Bancroft, 2290 N. Glendale, 2286 N. Glendale & 2280 N. Glendale.  No pending development applications nor building or grading permits have even been applied for.
Photo: Andrew Sears, October 4, 2012.  From the sidewalk directly below Glendale Blvd, you get an idea of just how steep that slope really is. 
Sears adds there are a lot of smaller Coast Live Oak saplings all over those lots too.  Guess those will all be gone soon too.
The City enacted a Protected Native Tree Ordinance #177404 in 2006.  So far, it only seems to make it easier to cut down protected trees by giving developer replacement ratios.  However, in this instance, no permits appear to have been applied for.
Stay tuned, we've reported it to the City's Community Forestry Advisory Committee, and I know I've got photos of this site in my archives for comparison. 
*UPDATE 10-5-12: Ron Lorenzen, Assistant Chief Forester, Bureau of Street Services, Urban Forestry Division, reports they will investigate.