Charleswood trees downed in troublesome house move to be replaced

Several trees were trimmed and cut down to make way for a house being moved on Saturday. (Source: CTV News/Zach Kitchen)

Multiple trees that were chopped down along Roblin Boulevard during the move of a large house last summer are set to be replaced.

Councillor Kevin Klein (Charleswood-Tuxedo-Westwood) said the plan is to replace some of the trees this spring.

“After talking to the forestry experts at the City of Winnipeg, they felt that that was the best time to do the replanting and that’s what we’re shooting for – early spring,” Klein told CTV News.

The trees were cut down during the move of a large house in August 2021.

According to Winnipeg Police Service, the house was being hauled along Roblin Boulevard to be taken outside of the city.

Police said the moving company had obtained a permit for the oversized structure. However, once the move started, it became clear that the operator had not confirmed the accessibility of the route, as required in the permit.

Officers dealing with the move found multiple trees along the move route had been deliberately felled or trimmed.

A man associated with the move has been arrested and charged with mischief over $5,000, and the move was temporarily halted.

“Charleswood is really well known for its trees, for the deer, for the style of communities that we have,” Klein said.

“Losing trees because of disease or other reasons are easy to accept. But, when it’s done because someone broke the law or took it upon themselves - there’s something about that (that is upsetting). Accountability comes into place, because we know how important trees are to the environment.”

A spokesperson for the City of Winnipeg said the tree replacement will be based on the appraised value of the trees removed. He said three trees will be planted in the median adjacent to Charleswood Memorial Park on the south side of Roblin, and the remaining 15 to 20 replacements will be smaller container trees, and will be planted in the same park space.

The city said it is continuing to explore cost recovery options, which could include court action against those responsible for the damage. The city said no compensation has been received yet.

MORE TREES TO BE CUT DOWN DUE TO DISEASE, DEATH

It’s not all good news for the tree canopy in Klein’s ward.

He said there are over 100 median trees not related to the house move in Charleswood, Tuxedo, and River Heights that are going to be cut down over the next few weeks because they are diseased or dying.

Klein shared this information on his website and put out a call to constituents for ideas on what to replace eliminated trees with.

“I am shocked at the amount of emails that I’m receiving with various ideas about what to do, so all those emails are being gathered together and we’re talking about them with our forestry department and trying to make a plan for the future,” he said.

- With files from Mike Arsenault