Tree madness in Mosgiel

A Dunedin City Council planner has recommended that resource consent be declined to fell an oak tree in Mosgiel.

This is an example of bureaucracy gone mad. Trees grow. Trees fall. Trees are cut down.

Why should trees on out own properties not be our own to do what we like with?

ODT: Developer to fight to allow felling of tree

Council planner Lianne Darby has recommended the hearings committee decline CC Otago Ltd’s resource consent application to fell the tree in King St, Mosgiel.

The tree, which is about 25m high, made a significant contribution to the amenity of the area, was healthy and the effects of its removal could not be mitigated, Ms Darby said in her report to the committee.

However, CC Otago Ltd director Craig Horne contends the tree’s canopy shades the existing dwelling and affects the comfort of its occupants, outweighing its amenity value.

‘Amenity value’ is a term used to try and justify councils dictating what it’s citizens can do with their own property.

When I moved in to my current property I cut down two large trees which shaded a neighbour’s house for much of the winter. The trees were close buildings and a high risk. I just cut them down.

I’ve probably cut down a hundred trees on my property. There were far too many, planted too close together.

I cut down an oak tree on my street boundary. It was planted to close to another oak so I pruned it to ground level. The other oak is doing much better now. I also planted another oak in another part of the property, in a much better location. It’s doing very well.

I’ve planted more trees than I have cut down. Better trees, in  better places, and the trees I haven’t cut down are doing better.

The Dunedin City Council is currently going through the process of implementing a new District Plan. This wants to forbid me from planting specified types of trees. It wants to forbid me from building, and it wants to forbid me from painting buildings a whole range of colours.

They want to severely restrict anything done above a 100 metre altitude. A lot of Dunedin is higher than 100 metres (my property happens to straddle the 100 metre contour). Because some people don’t want other people to do things with their own property. They don’t want to look across a harbour and see a house on a hill. And they want to force you to keep some trees and not plant others.

Why should the council dictate to me what I can do with my own property and my own things on that property?

One of the most important amenities a city has is it’s citizens. Or they should be.