Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Sidewalks Of New York

Not long ago my neighbor had a mason "improve" his sidewalk's condition by leveling out the bumps on the long stretch beside his house. The bumps were clearly made by the plane trees. Well, not more than a few weeks after he had this mason fix it up, the city came in (well, a contractor paid by the city) and tore up the old sidewalk and replaced it completely at no cost to him! I wouldn't of believed it if he hadn't told me. They actually did a nice job too, curving the sidewalk where the tree's roots were swollen from contact with the previous sidewalk.

Then I came across this post at KARMABrooklyn Blog. Apparently, if you are a homeowner who resides in a 1, 2, or 3 family home, and your street tree is lifting your sidewalk, the Parks Dept. will come in and repair that sidewalk. The sidewalk has always been a contentious space between owners and the city. It's the city's sidewalk to plant trees, but it's the owner's sidewalk when it comes to fixes or replacement. I think this program can go a long way toward amelioration and maybe cut down on those pesky 'I tripped on a city sidewalk' lawsuits that we always hear about, but never seem to ever know anyone directly involved.

Being that the Parks Dept. is involved, we can hope (there's always hope) that they will make tree pits more friendly to the the trees. Good luck trees.

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