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Agendas and Minutes

Tree Commission (View All)

Tree Commission Minutes

Thursday, August 04, 2011



August 4, 2011



CALL TO ORDER –Ashland Tree Commission meeting was called to order at 6:01 p.m. on August 4, 2011, in the Siskiyou Room in the Community Development and Engineering Services Building located at 51 Winburn Way, Ashland, Oregon.


Commissioners Present

Council Liaison

Russ Neff

Russ Sibliger - ABSENT

Casey Roland


Tom Meyers

Staff Present

Tracy Peddicord

Michael Pina, Assistant Planner

Bobby Townsend

Anne Thayer -  Parks Dept.






July 7th Tree Commission Minutes – Townsend motioned/Roland seconded to approve the July 7th, 2011 regular meeting minutes Voice vote: all AYES, Motion passed.  The minutes were approved as submitted.









PLANNING ACTION:            2011-00886

SUBJECT PROPERTY:          1250 Siskiyou Blvd.

APPLICANT:                          Drew Gilliland / SOU 

DESCRIPTION:                      A request for Tree Removal Permit approval to remove a 24-inch DBH Apple tree placed in between the Frances Street right-of-way and a basketball court on SOU property; South of Siskiyou Blvd on Frances Lane. A Certified Arborist has not reviewed the subject tree. COMPREHENSIVE PLAN DESIGNATION: Southern Oregon University ZONING: SO; ASSESSOR’S MAP: 39 1E 15BA TAX LOT: 3100


Site visits were performed by all.

Michael read the staff report.


The Commission discussed the reason for the tree’s removal is to make way for a sidewalk and retaining wall that will lead from the senior housing on campus to Siskiyou Blvd. Neff Noticed that a Locust in the nearby parking lot is also dead and could be replaced. Gilliland responded that the Locust can also be taken out and replaced (as it’s current size does not require a planning action to be taken by the City).  The Commission recommended that removal of the Apple tree be mitigated by replanting another tree in close proximity to the site.


Commissioner Townsend moved to approve, all were in favor.

PLANNING ACTION:            2011-00885

SUBJECT PROPERTY:          415 Lithia Way

APPLICANT:                          Mike Jones / Rouge Federal Credit Union      

DESCRIPTION:                      A request for Hazardous Tree Removal Permit approval to remove a 12 inch DBH Sweetgum tree placed in a 3 x 4 foot landscape island in the parking lot of 415 Lithia Way. A Certified Arborist has reviewed the tree at 415 Lithia Way and has found that the tree is hazardous due to the lifting the sidewalk and creating a significant tripping hazard. COMPREHENSIVE PLAN DESIGNATION: Downtown Commercial; ZONING: C-1-D; ASSESSOR’S MAP: 39 1E 09BD TAX LOT: 1000


Site Visits all.

Michael presented the staff report.


The Commission discussed the small area that is available for the tree. Staff noted there is a total of 11 parking spaces are on-site (7 directly next to the bank and 4 across the alley). As such, off-street parking standards require 1 tree per 7 parking spaces; therefore a tree has to be replaced in this location. Townsend also noted that without a tree in that location, the parking area would essentially be a sea of asphalt and a tree substantially adds to the shade and environment of the area. The Commission tossed around ideas on how to allow for more area to allow a new tree to grow without as many encumbrances. The Commission recommends that since the concrete will have to be demolished anyways, that the Bank should explore the idea of relocating the light onto the building, making the parking space immediately to the north a Compact space, and expand the planting area to allow for a more open area for an appropriate tree to be planted. Staff will look into parking standards to see if this would be an option.    


Commissioner Myers moved to approve, all were in favor.



Tree of the Year Nominations: Staff had received 15 nominations for the 2011 Tree of the Year. A few Commissioners had not had a chance to view all of the nominated trees. The Commission is going to view all of the nominated trees over the weekend and relay their top five picks to staff by Monday. Staff will then compile the shortened list to have a top five chosen by the commission.


Future Speakers at Tree Commission: Staff had asked the Commission to name a few topics/people that they would like to come to speak at the regular Tree Commission meetings. Townsend stated the need to discuss water and how does it play into reviewing landscape and tree plans. Possible people to come speak are Robbin Pearce in the Conservation Department, the Watershed Council, and possibly people that have a link to sustainable development community. Townsend brought up that the lack of water is why the Commission has such an interest in the Groasis boxes that the Commission tried to get a few months ago. Drew Gilliland from SOU remained in the audience, and asked about the Groasis boxes. Roland described what they were, and Gilliland suggested that this would be something that the University might be interested in partnering with the Tree Commission. Roland said that he would contact Demark directly to attempt to obtain the amount that we need.


Another topic would be Soil. Myers mentioned a conference he attended had a wonderful speaker that discussed organic soil and the benefits doing so. Peddicord stated that since we have money in our budget, that perhaps the Tree Commission could sponsor him as a guest speaker for the whole community. 


The one other topic/speaker that the Commission would like to have is someone from the SOU Environmental Education Department to speak to whatever issues/topics that they might be working on. The Commission would like to see more coordination with the University in town to talk about environmental issues. Staff reminded the Commission that a student Liaison is available to have on the Tree Commission. Although difficult to retain students, this brings up an opportunity for the Commissions to be more involved with the topics at SOU.


Attendance Sheet: Staff presented the attendance sheet for the months of January to June 2011.



Liaison Reports:

      Anne Thayer, Parks: Anne had attended a conference that she found was very valuable to the commission and brought back information to have other Tree Commissioners possibly attend. Also, Anne stated the long noted roost for the Screeching Owl has been removed due to rotting and decay. In its place Parks placed a Box for the Owls to roost in. 


New Items: Roland noted that a series of trees at approximately Union and Siskiyou are dead and do not look well on the Main Boulevard into the City. Anne commented that these trees are on private property and does not maintain them. Staff will send a letter to the property owner notifying them of the dead trees and it would be their responsibility of replacing and maintaining them.


Current Balance $750.00



The meeting was adjourned at 7:11 PM. Next Meeting:  Thursday, September 8, 2011


Respectfully submitted by Michael Piña, Assistant Planner

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