Ancient tree cut down, could have been saved
Thursday, July 10, 2014 - 7:01 am

To the Editor:

A few weeks ago I asked that the St. Lawrence Federal Credit Union Board of Directors consider saving the ancient cucumber magnolia that had been living on their recently acquired Court Street property in Canton.

They decided that saving the tree could cause them to lose a couple of parking spots, and that even trying to save the tree might endanger the tree and its root system! If saving the tree had been a serious priority the architects would not have dismissed the potential ways to work around the tree so quickly.

After their meeting the tree was quickly cut down and left lying in pieces at the same spot where it had stood on its own for over one hundred years. This was insulting to the people who had written to and met with board members concerning the tree’s fate. The tree was cut down soon after the board meeting and interestingly, no other trees on the property were touched even though most of them are probably going to face the same fate as my old friend.

No one questions the right of the St. Lawrence Federal Credit Union’s Board of Directors to do as they please to their property. I would like to shine light on how the proponents of the tree were not taken seriously and how the Credit Union quickly cut the tree down to end the discussion on the topic of potentially working around the heritage tree on their property.

Over the next few months the building and most of the remaining trees on the Court Street property will come down and a new building will be built. The credit union will be looking for business and touting themselves as a good neighbor and a member of the Canton community. Events like this do not happen in a vacuum.

Time will be the ultimate judge, but as I drive by the pieces of the old tree (still) sitting as a daily reminder of a failed attempt to reason with an organization that did not want anything or anyone to stand in its way...I don’t have much hope.

Tony Beane