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Fashion District Trees Getting Trendy Cut

By Eric Richardson
Published: Friday, October 17, 2008, at 08:16AM
Tree Trimming on Spring Eric Richardson [Flickr]

Ficus trees on Spring street get a trimming earlier this week.

It's makeover season in the Fashion District. The Fashion District BID is giving more than five hundred trees a trim as part of a campaign to improve the look of the streets and encourage commerce.

The city's Urban Forestry Division handles street tree maintenance, but limited funding means that trees are trimmed once every nine years.

The long intervals are particularly rough for quick-growing ficus trees, one of Downtown's most prevalent species. When the city trims a ficus, nearly all of the tree's greenery is chopped off, leaving a nearly-dead looking result. The tree regrows, but the intervening period doesn't make for a pleasant look.

The Fashion District BID thinks that good looking trees translate into economic benefit. "Beautiful trees and welcoming tree-lined streets have been shown to affect consumer spending patterns in downtowns," said Fashion District BID head Kent Smith in a recent press release. "Shoppers consistently give higher ratings to shops with beautiful tree-lined streets!"

Trimming is going on now, and should be completed in the next month.

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