Tree and Green Space Haters in Philly

Tree and Green Space Haters in Philly

We got a kick out of the comments on Facebook and other sites regarding our campaign to maintain open space and a 80 year old tree in South Philadelphia.  Some will make you laugh and others will make you go what?  Please help save open space in development projects and sign and share our petition today.

https://www.change.org/p/councilman-mark-squilla-save-old-2-st-tree

Here are some of the best:

Hey Suburbanites, welcome to Philly, land of concrete. If you want trees everywhere, move back to the Culdesac!

Want more trees. Move to Jersey! Worried about oxygen. Get rid of the factories. Car exhaust. Ride a bike.

If you’re stupid enough to live in an urban environment you should have to take a bus to see a tree.

Really?! Wildlife?!!!! Rabid pigeons? Rats? Roaches… Progress

Other comments for or against were items that one could discuss and debate.  We have learned a lot from all sides and perspectives.

The land of concrete one inspired the cartoon.

Hey look we missed a green spot...more concrete please
Hey look we missed a green spot…more concrete please

Please don’t forget to sign and share our petition to save small open spaces in new developments in Philadelphia.
https://www.change.org/p/councilman-mark-squilla-save-old-2-st-tree

https://www.change.org/p/councilman-mark-squilla-save-old-2-st-tree
https://www.change.org/p/councilman-mark-squilla-save-old-2-st-tree

Why the Tree is at Risk

Our 80-plus year old tree is in danger from development plans on an adjacent lot that is just too small for building or living, 14ft wide x 20ft deep. The design calls for a 3 story trinity house which would force cutting almost half the branches. If the shock doesn’t kill the tree, it would still be unbalanced, posing the danger of falling toward our house or neighbor’s properties,

The plan is coming before the Philadelphia Zoning Board soon. Hopefully, they will see that the lot is too small for the suggested plan. However, if the Philadelphia Zoning Board releases the lot’s owner from the open space requirements, our tree will be destroyed.
Here is a summary of our discussion with the lot’s owner/developer so far:
  • In our very first encounter (Early 2015) before he purchased the lot, we told him the lot would not be worth it. There was no way the local area was going to permit a curb cut for a garage, because they just turned down similar requests to larger houses down the street.
  • The next encounter (Saturday 5/16/2015): The gentleman approached saying that he bought the lot property next to our house and said he was going to build upon it. I told him we would fight any zoning changes for the property use.  Here is one of his comments as it related to the Old Tree:
You are going to have to get the tree off my property side when I build my work shed.
  • That’s when we asked our tree company to trim up the tree as much as possible to get room for the developer. Our Arborist said that if they take away that big branch, we will have to take away the entire tree for safety.
  • We heard nothing for a year, until Friday night (6/3/2016), when the developer posted a notice for a zoning meeting on Tuesday 6/7/2016. This left us one weeknight to circulate a petition among the neighbors. In less than 2 hours we got 47 signatures Against the Zoning Relief!
  • At the Pennsport Civic Association Zoning meeting (Tuesday, 6/7/2016), the Developer said:
If the tree is on my side, I can trim that, correct?
  • After the 6/7 meeting, we figured the next meeting would be on August 3, 2016 with the Philadelphia Zoning Board in downtown Philly. However, we got another late Friday night (6/17/2016) notice for a meeting on Tuesday 6/21/2016. A bunch of neighbors were complaining about the late notice, and how only a few people could make the meeting.
  • At the next Pennsport Civic Association Zoning meeting on Tuesday 6/21/2016, I mentioned that we had the arborist clean up the tree as far above his lot as possible. The Developer replied:
Did you get a quote for cutting down the tree?
We don’t want our tree to be cut down! It is one of the oldest, tallest trees remaining in our neighborhood of South Philly.  The Big Tree helps
  • Our Neighbors, by cleaning the atmosphere and providing shade for people and animals  (see our post: OLD 2ST TREE BENEFIT CALCULATOR )
    Possum visits the Old Tree
    Possum visits the Old Tree May 10, 2016

    Dog and Boy playing Under the Old Tree
    Big Dog and Boy playing Under the Old Tree
  • Families, as there are so few Big Trees for the kids to see every day
  • Wildlife, as this is a great place for birds and even hawks to rest as they migrate, plus small mammals like to visit every once in awhile. (see our category of posts BIG TREES AND ANIMALS )
Help us save this tree by signing our petition, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for all the latest updates.
Thank you for your time and support.

Bubbles and Heart Watching Birds

4 Month old sister kittens, Bubbles and Heart, watching the birds in the Big Old 2St Tree.  They are rescues from a neighbor in Queens Village.  They love sitting in the stairs and looking out the window at the birds in the tree.

A Big Old Dog and A Big Old Tree

Cookie our 135 lb Great Pyrenees Rescue dog Loves her Big Tree.

Great Pry Cookie dog and her Big tree
Great Pry Cookie dog and her Big tree

Ever since we adopted Cookie 5 years ago, she has loved the Big Tree. Mom and her have finally divided up their shares of the tree floor.  I truly think she will miss the tree, if we lose it.

She loves the natural cooling a big shade tree provides and not to mention the dirt.

To learn more about adopting Great Pry’s please check out

National Great Pyrenees Rescue  (www.nationalpyr.org)

Below is Cookie caught in the action burying a bone in Mom’s flower bed around the tree.  This was the start of the great battle.  The photos above are of the agreed to truce.