DOE to probe felling of Tehran’s iconic trees

Following the dispute between environmentalists and officials at Tehran Municipality about the felling of iconic trees that line the capital’s Valiasr Street, the Department of Environment has announced it will investigate the case.

In early June, the municipality knocked down seven trees—12 according to some reports—in the vicinity of Tehran’s City Theater.

“The trees had been drying slowly for the past seven years and were rotting. They posed a risk to pedestrians and drivers, so an expert commission voted in favor of cutting them down and we obliged,” said Amirhossein Asari, deputy for urban services and environment at TM, on an earlier query on the issue.

A workgroup tasked with investigating the felling of trees at Tehran City Council claimed that the trees were dying.

However, shopkeepers on Valiasr Street say the trees were fine and healthy up until three years ago when the municipality started doing substructure work in the gutters, where the trees were located, for the street drainage system.

“We’ve written to the workgroup and enquired about the issue,” Massoumeh Ebtekar, the head of DOE, told ISNA.

At 19.3 kilometers long, Valiasr Street—which runs north to south—is said to be the Middle East’s longest street. It is one of Tehran’s main thoroughfares and commercial hubs, which is lined with 90-year-old plane trees planted in wide gutters.

By Financial Tribune

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