By Jake Morrison
Trees to be destroyed in Phase 2 of the new Civic Hospital campus construction at the Experimental Farm are marked on the map as red circles.
The full report from which the map came (New Civic Development for The Ottawa Hospital; Environmental Effects Analysis/ Environmental Impact Statement and Tree Conservation Report Update) is at http://webcast.ottawa.ca/plan/. Appendix A, “Phase 2 Tree Inventory Results,” is a mapping and listing of the trees included in Phase 2 (the parking garage) with notations as to whether to cut them or not. Its main use is to fill out the tree-cutting permit applications for the City of Ottawa.
Protesters gathered at Carling and Preston on March 27 to show their opposition to the destruction of trees on the Experimental Farm to make way for the new hospital. I went to document the gathering but also to compare that map to the trees on the ground.
It’s heart-breaking. The image seen here shows what The Ottawa Hospital (TOH) project manager, Graham Bird, calls the “smile of trees” on the escarpment; TOH is going to wipe that smile right off the land. Everything in the first seven eighths of the hill will be cut, leaving about 35 trees on the very top and cutting about 140 below. This was a windbreak planted by the original Central Experimental Farm management in the 1880s. It will be stripped off the escarpment and replaced with a wind funnel aimed at Commissioner’s Park.
Here’s hoping for an enlightened TOH Board.
Jake Morrison is a photographer and tree enthusiast.