July 10, 2015 By Jackie Strawbridge
The Parks Department is in the process of cutting down about 50 trees from Astoria Park, according to the agency.
Meghan Lalor, a spokeswoman for the Parks Dept., said that 43 mature trees are marked for removal due to water damage from Superstorm Sandy.
According to Lalor, the chopped trees at Astoria Park range in age from 10 to more than 50 years old. She said they will be replaced with “young trees” in the fall.
The removals are part of a City-wide program initiated last summer to address trees that were severely impacted by Sandy; about 10,000 trees will be taken down and replaced throughout New York.
“We only remove trees that are dead, structurally unsound or in such severe decline that they are not likely to recover,” she added. She also said that Parks “will make every effort” to replant trees in roughly the same area they were removed.
The Parks Department does not have an inventory of the total number of trees at Astoria Park, according to Lalor, so it is unclear exactly what percentage of the canopy is being removed.
However, park-goers are apparently noticing. The Astoria Park Alliance said that the organization has received a number of questions from community members about the tree removals.