Neighbors can’t agree whether or not several trees should stay in their community

Posted at 6:59 PM, Aug 21, 2014

Suffolk, Va. - More than 200 willow oak trees in Suffolk - should they stay or should they go?  Neighbors don't seem to agree.

"My trees really don't give me any problems," said Russell Bullock, resident of the Harbour View Community.

"They're there. I'd like to see them take them out before they grow too big," said Gene Seward, who also lives in the community.

The trees, which line the sidewalks on South Links Circle and Soundings Crescent, were planted when many folks bought their homes in the Harbour View Community.  But now, some homeowners say the trees are causing problems and could cause more issues down the road.

NewsChannel 3 obtained a letter sent to homeowners in the Golf Villages Neighborhood from the Golf Villages Architectural Review Board. The letter says that 270 trees - 232 of those on homeowner property - are causing problems.  Roots are damaging the concrete.  Trees are too close to utility lines.  And in one case, the roots ruptured a water line. On top of that, the letter goes on to say that tree sap is becoming an issue, and the trees are blocking street lights and signs, causing saftey issues.

"They have the root system that just creeps up and destroys the sidewalks and plumbing that's in the ground," said Seward.

But not everyone thinks the trees should be cut down.

"I don't think most of the neighbors would want them taken out," said Thomas Taylor, resident of the Harbour View Community.

"The trees have not given me a problem, and I like the way they look," said Bullock.

Now, the letter just outlines what the review board discovered.  No one is being forced to remove the trees, but they can at their own expense if they want.

The letter says the board is reviewing discounted prices for tree removal as well as tree replacement options.