Douglas Brown says the City of Surrey should show flexibility and allow him to remove one tree from his backyard. (Aaron Hinks photo)

Resident’s application to remove tree denied

Douglas Brown says Surrey should grant permission in light of recent Hawthorne Park clear cutting

In light of the recent clearcut of a section of Hawthorne Park to make way for a connector road, South Surrey resident Douglas Brown says the city should show flexibility when it comes to his request to remove a tree from his property.

Brown first tried to have the tree removed five years ago after he attempted to sell his house. He says his house was on the market for three months but nearly every prospective buyer raised concerns with the mature tree.

“Several people said as soon as they saw the tree, no,” Brown told Peace Arch News.

The tree, which is in Brown’s backyard, sits prominently in front of his living-room window.

Brown made a second attempt to get approval last Christmas to remove the tree. However, this time in his application he told the City of Surrey he would replace the tree with a number of trees on city property. He said he would allow the city to determine how many trees should be replanted.

Brown said the city denied his request because the tree is no danger to his house, and that the city did not make note of his offer to replant trees in lieu of approval.

“I can’t approve the removal of the tree as it is still over 3m from the house and there isn’t a valid reason under the bylaw for its removal,” city tree manager Nadia Chan wrote to Brown. “The next step would be to hire an arborist to undertake a detailed tree risk assessment. Then I can review the application again.

“The City Arborist who does the assessment of the tree is looking for any defect or area of concern with the tree. They only do this from the ground as we don’t have the ability to do aerial (climbing) assessments of trees.”

Brown sent a followup email to the city, he said, asking for their position on his proposed deal. He said the city has yet to respond.

PAN was unable to connect with Chan for further comment.

Brown, who turns 90 years old this month, says he wants to sell his house in order to downsize.

“They have a tree policy, I appreciate the tree policy,” Brown said, adding that he feels the city should evaluate the circumstances on a case-by-case basis.

Last month, the city cut down approximately 450 trees in preparation for a road through the Hawthorne Park green space. The roadway is a part of the City of Surrey’s 105 Avenue Connector project.

Just Posted

Surrey awards contract for Hawthorne Park improvements

Roughly $1 million contract is first of three phases of upgrades to the Surrey park

Surrey council votes to cap public hearing speakers to five minutes

Surrey man says the move is ‘destroying open consultations and transparency’

B.C. freestyle skier wins gold

Cassie Sharpe of Comox shines in the halfpipe

Comic Amit Tandon will get Surrey laughing at life’s challenges

Popular South Asian comedian performing Sunday at Surrey’s Bell Performing Arts Centre

Historic cricket league aims to get Surrey into the game

As new season approaches, British Columbia Mainland Cricket League looks to hit it out of the ground

Surrey averaging one shooting a week in 2018

Police believe Friday night shooting in 13200-block of 62nd Avenue was targeted

OLYMPIC ROUNDUP: Canada rounds out Day 11 earning gold in 2 more events

Comox Valley’s Cassie Sharpe and fan-favourites Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir all earned golds

5 to start your day

NDP to release budget today, Dawson Creek man’s car found in Hope, and more

Trudeau announces two-way $1 billion investment deal with India

Some of India’s biggest companies to invest more than $250 million in Canada in the coming years

’60s Scoop group educates survivors, pushes rejection of federal settlement

Federal government’s compensation proposal includes $50 million for an Indigenous Healing Foundation

As ‘Black Panther’ shows, inclusion pays at the box office

At the box office, inclusion is paying — and often, it’s paying off big time

Washington senator wants B.C. to follow suit and phase out net-pen fish farms

An American ban will be less effective in the shared ecosystem of the Salish Sea, senator says

Virtue and Moir end ice dance careers with Olympic gold

Virtue and Moir’s gold medal win at the Olympics makes them the world’s most decorated figure skaters

Canadians find living in small spaces teaches creativity

Canadian families choosing to live in small spaces to bring closeness to children

Most Read