Earlier this year (in mid-June, to be exact), Plano Parks and Recreation’s Urban Forestry Division began a project to replace median trees in three locations within the city.
The project is expected to take several months to complete, and when it is, motorists will see a noticeable difference in not only the health of the new trees but the islands on which they stand as well.The three locations that this project is taking place are:• Coit Road from Plano Parkway to the President George Bush Turnpike
• Park Boulevard from Avenue P to Jupiter and from Peachtree Lane to Shiloh Road
• Parker Road from Coit Road to Mission Ridge Road and west of Independence Parkway from Deep Valley Trail to Round Rock TrailCentral North Construction, LLC is the contractor hired for the project. Urban Forester Angela Kralik visits these sites on a regular basis to monitor the project’s progress and is responsible for everything from selecting the trees to inspecting the forms for pouring concrete. Approximately 160 new trees are being planted in these locations as well as irrigation, turf and mulch installations.Below is Angela’s update of what has been completed at each section thus far:
• Coit Road – Existing trees and stumps have been removed and excavated. The irrigation lines have been trenched, installed, approved by our staff, and covered over. Concrete forms have been built, steel has been installed, and concrete has been poured.
• Park Boulevard – Existing trees and stumps have been removed and excavated. The irrigation lines have been trenched, installed, approved by our staff, and covered over. Some of the concrete forms have been built, steel has been installed and concrete has poured near Peachtree. This is the final area to pour concrete/hardscape for this project.
• Parker Road – Existing trees and stumps have been removed and excavated. The irrigation lines have been trenched, installed, approved by our staff, and covered over. Concrete forms have been built, steel has been installed, concrete has been poured and wood frames for the concrete are being removed.
Please note that each section of the median is being done one at a time, so while one stage of the project is being completed on Park Boulevard, for example, it is not being done on Coit and Parker roads. “I know at times it is an eye sore and inconvenience while work is being completed. We will continue to move along as quickly as possible to the get job done,” said Angela in an update she emailed to nearby residents recently. “Our contractor has been working diligently to get the job completed in a timely manner.”
Why replace median trees?Median trees experience the highest stress of any other trees due to reflective heat from concrete and traffic pollution, limited planting space and not to mention being struck by cars from time to time. Declining trees also pose safety risk due to falling limbs that can land in the roadway.In an effort to keep Plano’s streets and motorists safe while always maintaining a healthy urban forest, the department will be selecting new sections of median each year for replacement. This is part of Plano’s long-range plan to provide a healthy, safe and sustainable urban forest for Plano.Motorists can expect lane closures in these areas as the project continues into the fall. Please visit our Urban Forestry web page for more information about this and other Urban Forestry programs.