Anti-arboricide meeting set for Tuesday

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AEP/PSO, our local electric company, is seeking Corporation Commission approval for a new policy that would allow them to remove any tree within 15 feet of the centerline of their easement. Reports are that they've already begun implementing this in some midtown Tulsa neighborhoods.

Oakview Estates Neighborhood Association (that's 38th Street between Delaware and Lewis) has organized a public meeting on the plan this Tuesday night, August 16th, at 6 p.m., at the Whiteside Park recreation center on Pittsburg Avenue north of 41st Street. Representatives from AEP-PSO and the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, members of the Tulsa City Council, and state legislators are expected to be in attendance. You'll have an opportunity to learn the details of the plan, ask questions, and voice your opinion. For more information, contact Lloyd Prueitt of the Oakview Estates Neighborhood Association at 747-9596.

One of Tulsa's finest attributes is our canopy of mature trees, particularly in the older neighborhoods of Midtown Tulsa. It immediately strikes the eye when you see the city from the air. Unfortunately, we're also a city with above-ground wires for electric, phone, and cable, and those beautiful trees threaten continuity of service, especially when the wind blows the way it did this afternoon. A power outage is a mild inconvenience for most of us, but a deadly threat to some, particularly during extreme temperatures. AEP/PSO naturally wants to reduce the number of outages and the cost of restoring service, and they don't want to have to keep going back to trim the same trees. Neither do they want the expense of burying lines.

(Anyone else remember that one of the big selling points of the new Gilcrease Hills development, when it opened in '69 or '70, was that all utilities were underground? And if you need a reminder about how ugly overhead lines are, take a look at the new Arvest Bank building at 15th and Utica -- the lines run right in front of the new building, about halfway up.)

These trees help clear the air and keep the city cooler than it would otherwise be. AEP/PSO's interests have to be balanced against the need to maintain this important civic asset.

AEP/PSO does have the right to remove trees within its easement, but the typical easement is 7.5 feet either side of the line. As a homeowner, you have the right to have a tree outside that easement, and AEP/PSO can't remove it without your permission. Back in March, I published notes from a meeting about your rights regarding AEP/PSO and tree removal.

If you love Tulsa's urban forest, I hope you'll show up Tuesday night to learn about AEP/PSO's proposal and voice your opinion on it.

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AEP/PSO is proposing new rules to expand the area within which they can cut down and trim trees. An important meeting to discuss this matter is set for Tuesday, August 16, 2005, at 6:00 p.m. in the Whiteside Park Recreation... Read More


Don Author Profile Page said:

When I first visited TU before going to school there, one of the most prevalent things I remember about Tulsa was all the overhead lines. Living here now, we all are pretty much used to it. But, having grown up in the Chicago suburbs where almost everything is buried, it is an incredible eyesore that really sticks out to visitors. No doubt the overhead lines are cheap, but they also make our city look cheap to outsiders.

didn't get a chance to go to the meeting.
care to recap?

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on August 13, 2005 9:46 PM.

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