Manila Avenue Tree Removal and Replacement

Manila Avenue Tree Removal and Replacement

As part of the 2014 Pavement Rehabilitation Program, Manila Avenue between Richmond Street and Kearney Avenue will be repaved with work consisting of removal and replacement of the top two (2) inches of the existing asphalt concrete roadway surface. This section of Manila Avenue is one of the few remaining streets in poor pavement condition in the City. The existing American Sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua) tree roots have displaced sidewalk, curb, gutter, and pavement all along Manila Avenue on both sides of the street. In order to reconstruct pavement, curb, gutter, sidewalk and driveways, a substantial amount of tree root pruning would be required; this would detrimentally affect the health of these large trees whose health has been previously compromised by prior root and utility pruning (the trees on the south side of the street are within power, cable and telephone lines). For this reason, City staff determined that 13 street trees should be removed and replaced with approximately 23 trees of species that are suitable for the specific site conditions.

In undergoing the environmental clearance and design phase for this project, which is funded both by a federal One Bay Area Grant (OBAG) and the City’s Measure A, Public Works conducted a community meeting regarding the tree removal and replacement in December 2013. Just under 10 residents attended the meeting. Given the current displacement of sidewalk, curb and gutter, most of the residents were in strong favor of the project scope including the removal and replacement of all the trees. Some residents were interested in doing additional landscaping improvement along the frontage of their homes after completion of the project.

After a bird nesting survey by a qualified field biologist, tree removal work was completed in January 2015 and new tree planting will occur in late February: prior to the paving work, prior to nesting season, and during the preferred planting season.

New tree species recommended by the City Arborist as replacement trees are:

1. The trees on the North side of the street will be comprised of two of the following species:
• Quercus agrifolia (Coast Live Oak) or Quercus ilex (Holly Oak)
• Zelkova serrata (Saw Leaf Zelkova) or Ulmus x ‘Liberty’ or ‘Frontier’ (hybrid American Elm)
2. The trees on the Southside (with overhead utilities) will be:
• Acer saccharum, subspecies grandidentatum (Big Tooth Maple) or Zelkova serrata ’Schmidtlow’ (Wireless Zelkova)
• Arbutus ‘ Marina’ (Arbutus ‘Marina’) or Pistacia chinensis ‘Keith Davey’ (Chinese Pistache)