KANSAS CITY, Mo. - A plan to cut down 68 trees to save Kansas City, Mo., sidewalks has led to protests from some neighbors and environmentalists claiming the city excluded them from the decision process.
A group of about two dozen did whatever they could to make a statement about a city project which affects the Manheim neighborhood east of Troost.
City officials said many of the sidewalks in the area are buckling because of the tree roots, and pointed out the the repairs are not even costing homeowners. The entire project is paid for through a $25 million grant through the Department of Transportation.
Rodney Knott is the former president of the Manheim Neighborhood Association and said the project is nothing new.
"Let's be clear, we're not talking about...cutting a tropical rain forest here," he said. "The city initially looked at 200 trees. Out of those 200, only 68 are going to be removed."
Dorothy Hawkins moved into the neighborhood almost 40 years ago. She's more concerned about the trees than sidewalk repair.
"From what I understand, there are other ways that this could be done without removing the trees, so I would like to know what the options are," Hawkins explained.
But others disagree.
One neighbor told 41 Action News they're not mourning the tree the crew cut down in their front yard Thursday, because they want a smooth sidewalk for their mother who uses a wheelchair.
"We mourn the loss of any tree but at the same time, the folks who actually live in this neighborhood have larger concerns...accessibility," Knott said.
Anyone with concerns about the plan are invited to share their thoughts with the city at 3 p.m . Friday at the Green Impact Zone on 4600 Troost.
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