Richmond neighborhood fights plan to remove 100-year-old tree for sidewalk project

RICHMOND, Texas – Waterside Estates in Richmond boasts beautiful views of the neighborhood lake and hundreds of trees, including a Pecan Tree believed to be more than a century-old.

Which is why many neighbors are “concerned and angry.”

“We just think that this is really unfair,” said long-time resident Irma Rohatgi. “Everybody in the neighborhood knows this tree.”

The local MUD district is building a sidewalk around the lake and has tagged dozens of trees with pink ribbons for removal.

“It can’t speak up for itself, right?” local Lynn Wheatcraft said of the 100-year old tree. “So we’re trying to give it a voice here, that’s all we’re trying to do.”

Neighbors like Wheatcraft said they have tried in vain to convince the MUD district to reconsider.

“This tree is the symbol of this community,” said neighbor Ling Luo. “We do not want them to remove it.”

The local MUD district attorney said he and the MUD district president and engineer would meet Monday night to make final decisions about which trees to remove.

“It’s what we’re trying to do, sustain this earth, and we want to sustain our neighborhood,” Wheatcraft said. “If (dozens of) these trees are gone, I mean, that’s one of the reasons why people live here.”