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Division Street replanting planned

About 50 trees chopped for roadwork

By Scott Bellile

Ranger Services of Appleton will plant 48 trees in the public right of way along Division Street after the 1-mile reconstruction project concludes this fall.

The New London City Council on July 10 unanimously approved a $20,976 contract with Ranger Services.

Approximately 48 trees, many of them mature, were removed in March so crews could replace water mains and sanitary and storm sewer laterals.

Trees will be planted after roadwork is finished to avoid damage from construction vehicles, New London Public Services Director Chad Hoerth said July 2 to the city’s parks and recreation committee, which recommended the proposal to the city council.

At the New London Parks and Recreation Committee meeting, First District Alderman Robert Besaw asked Hoerth whether Ranger Services or the homeowners would choose which species of trees are planted in front of their homes.

Hoerth said homeowners picked from eight options: ornamental pear, Japanese tree lilac, Amur maackia, musclewood, Kentucky coffeetree, disease-resistant elm, hackberry and linden. The species were determined to be good fits for Division Street based on the city’s existing nursery stock.

“It’s not going to be everything under the sun,” Hoerth said. “So we know we’re not going to be putting in ash trees in for obvious reasons [because of emerald ash borers]. We don’t want any maple trees in because we’re 50 percent maple right now in the community, and we want to diversify because if we ever had a maple bug come in, it’s going to wipe out 50 percent of our stock.”

Homeowners were not guaranteed the tree they requested, and some of the 48 trees will end up in different spots than where trees were cut down, Hoerth said.

Factors such as the locations of underground utilities and whether there are trees nearby on private property will determine where specifically trees are planted in the right of way, Hoerth said.

Homeowners will not pay for the new trees but will have to water them.

“If we’re going to give you a tree, the least you can do is go out and water it once in a while and keep it alive,” Mayor Gary Henke said with a grin at last week’s city council meeting.

Also at the July 10 New London City Council meeting:

• The city council unanimously approved the first reading of an ordinance amendment to regulate how individuals, organizations or businesses attach private property, such as anchors and docks, to the downtown river wall. A second reading and approval of the ordinance are set for August. New London Public Services Director Chad Hoerth said the point is to preserve the structural integrity of the wall, which the city has invested several hundred-thousand dollars into repairing. Parties would be required to hire the city’s engineer to review their plan as well as a licensed contractor to install whatever is attached.

• Mayor Gary Henke reappointed Betty Roberts and Ron Steinhorst to the New London Public Library and Museum Board.

• Henke reappointed April Kopitzke of the New London Area Chamber of Commerce, Bill Flease of Crystal Falls Banquet Facility and Mike Hibbard of Mosquito Hill Nature Center to the New London Tourism Commission. Henke appointed Jennifer Heidemann of Familiar Grounds Coffee Shop and Jay Patel of AmericInn Lodge & Suites to fill two vacancies. They replace Beth Hutchison and Brian Rand, former owners of Familiar Grounds and AmericInn, respectively, whose terms expired this year.

• Henke proclaimed July Park and Recreation Month in New London.

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