Nine heritage trees along Rusden Street, between Dangar and Faulkner Streets, will be removed Armidale Regional Council has announced.
The removal is due to the trees' declining health and their uplifting roots creating safety and accessibility issues for pedestrians.
The mix of Liquidambar trees and Claret Ash trees along Rusden Street were believed to be planted in the 1980s following the construction of the new council building. Several Claret Ash trees were replaced with Trident Maples in 2013 due to severe trip hazards and damage to adjacent buildings.
A council spokesperson said given the heritage listing of the trees and high public profile, a Level 5 arborist was engaged to provide an independent report and recommendations.
Of the 27 trees inspected, 15 trees have been recommended to be retained and nine trees recommended for removal. The report confirms that the Claret Ash trees with fungal disease will continue to decline and seven will be removed. Two Liquidambar trees will also be removed.
Six of the 27 trees will be root pruned or will have selected branches or dead wood removed.
Read more: Tree planting to fill the gaps begins
Armidale Mayor Sam Coupland said this year had been a busy period for the parks team as they catch up on managing and maintaining the city's extensive urban forest after drought and a tornado has impacted the streetscape.
"When you are as lucky as we are to have extensive street tree plantings sometimes an unfortunate outcome of this is the removal of sick trees and trees that create pedestrian hazards," Mayor Coupland said.
"This is a necessary and important step in the long term sustainable management of an urban forest like ours. But rest assured, as trees are removed there is always a plan to replace them."
Ninety mature trees were removed by council across the city earlier this year.
Weather permitting, the removal of the trees along Rusden Street will coincide with kerb and gutter renewal works scheduled for mid-June on the southern side of Rusden Street adjacent to the Anglican Church precinct.
During the kerb and gutter works further root pruning will be undertaken in an attempt to eliminate the current trip hazards council says.
"If the pruning required compromises the stability of the tree or the footpath design cannot be accommodated then the preferred option will be to remove the tree and replace it," Mayor Coupland said.
"Replanting of the trees will be programed following the construction works as plant stock becomes available."
The establishment of the new trees will take several years according to the council, so initially, they will be protected by tree guards that will be in place until they are.
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