HOLLYWOOD (CBSLA) — Hollywood neighbors are fighting to keep giant of ficus trees even though they’re destroying sidewalks and streets.
Advocates say they don’t want to give up the trees and worry they’ll be left with a concrete neighborhood if the city cuts down the trees.
For Kyra Patterson and her four-legged friend Lola, the dog days of summer may soon get very intense at their home.
“It’s not OK,” Patterson said, referring to ficus trees that form a canopy on the 1200 block on N. Cherokee Ave.
The City of Los Angeles is preparing to cut down all 18 trees in the next couple of weeks, citing overgrown roots have made the sidewalks inaccessible to people in wheelchairs and other mobility challenges.
City Hall has already been sued for that problem. But the Public Works department says pedestrian safety is the top priority.
“We’re here to say, ‘City Hall, get out of the 1980s. Get with it. Stop chopping down the trees,'” Patterson said.
On Wednesday night, a small group of demonstrators urged the city to fix the sidewalks instead cutting the trees.
The city recently settled $3 million after a pedestrian tripped and sued.
“This all comes down to the city. It was their fault. They’ve neglected these sidewalks for decades,” said activist Jacky Surber, of Angelenos for Trees.
A spokesperson for the Public Works department says the removal of the trees is part of a $3 billion improvement program and every tree that’s removed here will be replaced by two new ones that will provide a canopy without the same destructive roots.