Online inventory rates tree conditions around CoMo
COLUMBIA, Mo 12/1/13 (Beat Byte) --  One hundred and thirty four trees in the Old Southwest are targeted for removal under a plan that will receive funding at Monday night's Columbia City Council meeting.

Council members will transfer $150,000 to the city's street landscape maintenance fund to remove "diseased or dead trees in the street right of way," in most cases along the street on the far side of the sidewalk.   In some cases, the trees may be replaced with young saplings.  

Dead and diseased trees cause havoc in stormy weather.  This year, city crews removed a large tree in the Old Southwest that toppled onto power lines, a fence, and a storage shed. 
Last year, city arborists and the Davey Tree Company prepared a city-wide inventory of trees (page six at this link) that rates trees on a 7-point scale, ranging from Excellent or Fair to Poor or Dead

Streets are listed in alphabetical order.  To see how the city has classified trees on a street, scroll down; find the address; and read across the list.   These two trees near 504 Edgewood Avenue illustrate, with one marked for removal and the other classified in "fair condition."

Pin oak, 504 EDGEWOOD AVE, Critical, Removal, Cavity or Decay 
White Ash, 504 EDGEWOOD AVE, Fair, Large Tree Clean, None 
Under the heading "Primary Maintenance Need" on the inventory, Large Tree Clean means city workers will "remove dead, dying, broken, and/or diseased wood to minimize potential risk.   Trees in this category may be large enough to require bucket truck access or manual climbing." 

Numbers on the inventory refer to grading and assessment criteria described on the first five pages. 
Old trees offer shade, protection, and beauty, and their removal can cause controversy.   For unaware residents, the tree inventory should limit the unpleasant surprises that lead to controversy:  red X's painted on trees to mark them for removal, and the sound of saws from tree-cutting crews on the street outside. 

To learn the fate about trees along a street (in the city right-of-way) and which trees may be replaced after removal,  contact the public works department at 573-874-6289.