City of Madison Parks & Madison Metropolitan Sewer District
United States of America

In 2018, Sandburg area residents were promised that the trees in Reindahl Park would be protected, if the folks who attended this meeting (fewer than 50) allowed a sewer reliever pipe to be trenched and installed through the park. With that promise, those neighbors agreed, passing up three alternative routes that would have followed existing municipal rights-of-way along roads or with current sewer pipe routes.

Tree protection was to be achieved with the help of city parks staff, who were to contract a census of trees and choose the least destructive route. Late this spring, with the construction to start in a couple months, I asked parks to share their plans with the community, as they had promised. It turned out that, at minimum, 36 old growth or mature trees in Reindahl Woods, the only heritage woods in the park (seen in the first area aerial photo, 1937) would be destroyed if the route chosen by parks staff was used by MMSD. Several other mature trees near the eastern, western, and northern borders of the park would also be destroyed.

Opposition to the tree-cutting arose. A public meeting was held by MMSD on June 29, Parks project manager Sarah Lerner was in attendance. Afterwards, by email, she defended the route and tree destruction, saying it was too late to change it; she blamed concerned citizens, arguing that somehow, without having been provided the tree census and destruction plan by parks, we should have resisted in 2018; parks director Eric Knepp is making the same claim.

We call on Madison City Parks and MMSD (sewers) to work together to:
* protect all 36 old growth and mature trees in Reindahl Woods, as promised to the community in 2018;
* re-route the sewer reliever pipe before trenching begins in November and causes destruction of these or any other trees in the 50-250' Temporary Contruction Easement zone

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The Save Reindahl Woods petition to City of Madison Parks & Madison Metropolitan Sewer District was written by Jon Becker and is in the category Environment at GoPetition.