Real (slim) shady – ‘Tesco trees’ show value of urban greenery

The trees on the former Council Offices/Tesco site on the Broadway are improving an otherwise ugly area, and providing valuable shade on hot summer days.

Green not grey: these trees provide multiple benefits from aesthetic to shading to pollutant removal, but could so easily have been lost to yet more concrete.. (Photo: Chris Rose)

Green not grey: these trees provide multiple benefits from aesthetic to shading to pollutant removal, but could so easily have been lost to yet more concrete. (Photo: Chris Rose)

This row of London Planes along the Broadway was destined for the chop, but have been left standing thanks to the collapse of Tesco’s plan for a new store on the site of the former Bexley Council Offices, and a call for their retention by Bexley Natural Environment Forum.

Whilst the Council did ask Tesco’s agent to leave them in place once the demolition work was halted, as far as we know no formal commitment to sparing them was received in response. Fortunately they are still standing and look unlikely to removed now. The Council has said in writing that it will place a condition on any future application for this site that the trees must be retained, but the cynics amongst us will wish to keep an eagle eye open just in case this is somehow ‘forgotten’ when push comes to shove.

Here’s how ‘BW’ broke the story:

http://www.bexleywildlife.org/environment-forum-calls-for-tesco-tree-reprieve-as-store-plan-collapses/

and here’s a slide show on the value of urban trees:

http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20110118095356/http:/www.cabe.org.uk/files/benefits-of-urban-trees.pdf

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