Hundreds of trees on the chopping block in Leland - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Hundreds of trees on the chopping block in Leland

Town leaders in Leland are moving forward with a plan to cut down hundreds of trees which they say are causing damage to the town's streets and sidewalks. (Source: WECT) Town leaders in Leland are moving forward with a plan to cut down hundreds of trees which they say are causing damage to the town's streets and sidewalks. (Source: WECT)
Officials with the NC Forestry Service say the live oaks are damaging the streets and sidewalks, as well as blocking street lights, and disrupting wiring and cables underground. (Source: WECT) Officials with the NC Forestry Service say the live oaks are damaging the streets and sidewalks, as well as blocking street lights, and disrupting wiring and cables underground. (Source: WECT)
LELAND, NC (WECT) -

Town leaders in Leland are moving forward with a plan to cut down hundreds of trees they say are causing damage to the town's streets and sidewalks.

The golf community of Magnolia Greens currently has about 700 live oak trees along Grandiflora Parkway and other roads in the area. Town Manager David Hollis explained that leaders plan to cut down about 250 of them for safety reasons.

Hollis said the idea came from a recommendation from the NC Forestry Service's Urban Forestry Division, who pointed out that the live oaks are damaging the streets and sidewalks, as well as blocking street lights, and disrupting wiring and cables underground.

Hollis said it's becoming a safety issue for residents, but neighbors aren't happy about the idea.

Four years ago, Betty Gambale and her husband moved to Leland from Long Island, NY. She said one of the main reasons why they chose Magnolia Greens as a spot to live was because the trees reminded her of home.

"You'll notice in this community there are a lot of retirees and we love to walk and ride our bikes and it [the trees] do give some very nice shade," Gambale said. "But we're very upset, it's mainly the beauty. We're going to be losing that and destroying these beautiful trees. It's devastating!"

Hollis explained that the town doesn't like the idea of cutting the trees, but says the plan is a financial necessity.

Hollis said the $25,000 project is expected to last approximately two months.

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