Many causes for a lack of trees in cities

To the Editor:

Mary Fano Giacomoni in her letter of June 5 states that Hyde Park is losing trees. This is correct, although the reasons are not primarily due to building development. Trees in our urban environment have a difficult time even under ideal circumstances. They have suffered greatly from alien pests/diseases such as Dutch elm disease, which wiped out the near monoculture of elms, and now the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) which is rapidly destroying the green ashes found on many parkways. Trees also die from old age and from damage by vehicles. The current problem is that they are not being replaced. The current City administration has essentially eliminated parkway tree planting and the U. of C. does nothing about tree planting on parkways adjacent to their existing buildings, both campus and the many properties that they own in the neighborhood. The Chicago Park District is also unconcerned with replacing the many trees lost in our parks due to storms, as well as disease and old age. Hyde Park Kenwood residents need to contact the Mayor and their aldermen to urge parkway tree plantings, in a wide variety of species, as well as the Park District.

Joshua Telser