THE City of Joondalup is pushing ahead with clearing some vegetation and planting more trees in the median strip of Warwick Road.
The Times contacted the City after it received criticism of the clearing from Marmion Sorrento Duncraig Progress and Ratepayers Association president Michael Rose.
He said the undergrowth clearing started last week in the median near Davallia Road would result in the loss of “a great asset”.
“We’ve had nearly 40 years of growth and it’s an absolute gem,” he said.
“Lots of good grevilleas and hakeas that provide perfectly good vegetation and flowers and they’re just denuding it.
“This is the third year in a row we’ve tried to stop them.”
City chief executive Garry Hunt said the streetscape works were part of an enhancement program started in 2016 and listed in the City’s capital works program.
“The works are intended to remove vegetation which is dead or damaged and/or considered inappropriate for a median location,” he said. “The positioning of trees will also be considered to improve sightlines and ensure effective canopy coverage in accordance with the City’s Leafy City program.
“The removal of the undergrowth along this section of Warwick Road will assist in achieving this outcome, as well as reducing costs associated with ongoing maintenance of the median.”
Mr Hunt said the work would help reduce weed growth and prevent “litter trapping”.
“The City is retaining as many suitable specimens as possible and will be planting about 125 new trees along this section,” he said.
“The enhancement program is aimed at minimising costs to ratepayers whilst maintaining a green environment.”
Mr Rose asked “why should our rates be spent spoiling a wonderful median strip?”.
“The argument that taller trees will be planted with increased leaf cover shouldn’t mean that the existing understorey and all its habitat and food for birds and small fauna can’t be retained,” he said.
Sorrento resident Mike Needham said he was “shocked to see further destruction” of the Warwick Road vegetation.
“Two years ago, I corresponded with then Mayor Troy Pickard,” he said.
“I assumed there was general opposition to the clearance.
“Now, without any warning, the machines are back and tearing those wonderful bushes and small trees up.”