Friday, April 27, 2018

Large Oak Tree Falls During Windstorm Across NE 41st Street From Talaris Campus

downed tree

Yesterday the Laurelhurst Blog reported that Talaris removed  a tree near the fence on NE 41st street, as reported by several nearby neighbors.

Following the post, the Laurelhurst Blog received emails from other nearby neighbors with a different account, saying that the enormous tree had actually fallen onto the fence during a big windstorm, before it was to be removed by Talaris.

Neighbors commented:

I wonder if this is the same tree that fell across 41st Street the other day. It completely blocked the westbound lane. I called SDOT to come clear it so cars could get through. Fortunately nobody was hurt! 
The tree fell down on a windy day. I notified Talaris on Saturday of President’s Day weekend when I noticed a really big shift in the way that the tree was leaning after a big windstorm.   Very lucky that no one was hurt. 
The tree fell over recently before it was to be cut down?   
The tree you refer to in your Blog post, fell across 41st  about a week ago at around 3:00 pm and blocked off the westbound lane of traffic. The police had to block traffic until it could be cut away. As far as I could tell, the soggy soil conditions likely caused it to fall, with its root ball intact (the root ball remains) and it took a smaller tree with it. 

The Laurelhurst Blog contacted Seattle Landmarks Preservation Board who said that Talaris submitted an application for  "proposed removal of one hazardous tree" along with a report from a certified arborist.

On March 4th, Arbor Info LCC, inspected the red oak tree (Quercas rubra) to determine the condition of the tree and provide recommendations for future management.

The tree, which had a 19" diameter and stood 60' tall,  was found to be learning 15 degrees southerly over NE 41st Street. 

The root plate had lifted up 18" on the north side and the arborist said that the likelihood of root failure was high.

The arborist reported that there wasn't an opportunity for cabling as there were no nearby trees to anchor it to.

"In my opinion, the entire tree should be removed to minimize hazard risk that could be extreme in the event of failure," the arborist report stated.  

On March 22nd, Talaris presented these findings at the Landmarks Preservation Board meeting and the Board approved removal of the tree. 

The property was designated with landmark status in November 2013, which dictates that specific controls define certain features of the landmark to be preserved and a Certificate of Approval process is needed for changes to those features. Some incentives and controls included in the City's ruling are zoning variances, building code exceptions, and financial incentives, which are protected, as stated on the City's Landmark and Designation website.

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