Remember the maple come October elections

Our tree was sadly removed two years ago

Remember the maple come October elections

Dear CVRD chairman and directors:

I must say artist David Martinello’s sculpture fashioned from Island Savings Centre’s former big maple tree is impressive.

But his Interweave artwork pales in comparison to having the real, living tree fronting our ISC’s renovated parking lot.

Our tree was sadly removed two years ago after a vote and community consultation by ISC commissioners — despite pleas and protests by thousands of residents to keep the maple.

Those folks were keenly aware our hollow-centre heritage maple — deemed by arborists as healthy and worth preserving — could die in future.

And residents were willing to pay to install fixes such as metal bracing to prevent the maple from toppling during a windstorm.

Still, commissioners cited arguable safety issues and forged stubbornly ahead with the ISC’s parking lot plan that involved cutting our maple.

Terrible. That maple was part of Cowichan’s history and, among others things, could have remained as cool park, perhaps spelling good luck for visitors stopping to stand inside the tree’s unique hollow heart.

I hope voters have long memories about the ISC’s silly short-sightedness during our October civic election.

Leaders who don’t listen to residents and cherish Cowichan’s threatened ecology don’t deserve to be in office, or on our hard-working ISC commission.

Peter W. Rusland


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