A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

Tree cutting under way at riverfront

Written February 23rd, 2023 by Hasso Hering

A thick log was brought up from near the riverbank as tree cutting started Thursday along the Albany riverfront.

Tree cutting began Thursday along Albany’s Willamette Riverfront to prepare for the city’s “Waterfront Project.” Posted signs said the operation would go through Feb. 28.

Several crews with Mountain View Tree Service of Salem were busy in Monteith Riverpark and along the western segment of the Dave Clark Riverfront Path.

The city parks department said trees close to the Community Center would be coming down Saturday and the center would not be accessible then. The work is set for the weekend “to limit the impact on our Monday-Friday programs and patrons.”

Some of the trees to be removed in the park are in the way of planned changes there, including a summertime splash pad for children. Other trees were judged to be weak, a potential danger, or otherwise problematic.

More than 800 trees in the project area were evaluated and 84 were marked for removal, the city said. The riverfront design calls for 3,000 new plantings, including street trees on Water Avenue.

On Wednesday night, a woman spoke to the city council via Zoom and asked that the tree removal be called off in view of what she called a climate crisis. She spoke under “business from the public,” and as is customary, the council didn’t respond.

As for the climate, no crisis has been apparent around here. For what it’s worth, though, the tree cutting Thursday took place in an ice-cold wind with showers that mixed rain, snow and hail.

The riverfront project, a $15 million venture by Albany’s CARA urban renewal district, calls for updating Monteith Park and the Dave Clark Path, along with the western few blocks of Water Avenue.

The city staff has told the council that the project has ignited interest in private development along the riverfront that would yield economic gains for the community and a budget boost for local taxing entities such as the city and county.

The urban renewal program is intended to bring about economic improvement. If and when this result can be shown for the riverfront project, people may forget their dismay at the removal of some trees. (hh)

A logger works near the top of a tall tree between the highway bridges.

And here’s a slightly closer look.

15 responses to “Tree cutting under way at riverfront”

  1. Cap B. says:

    On your way back from the bike trip to watch the trees being cut, did you happen to go to the downtown core area? If you did, you could have stripped naked and ran hollering down the street, and no one would have noticed, because there’s no one there. Odds are the financial gains from new shoppers in downtown Albany brought about by cutting those trees will be nil, too. Besides, didn’t acquiring money over everything else get us in the awful shape we are in?

    As someone said who wrote the D-H about the trees being cut, “I’ll never go to Monteith Park again!

  2. Diane Branson says:

    What’s happening with the trees after they’re cut? Does Mountain View Tree Service keep the cut trees for their use or does the City retain ownership? If they belong to the City will they be cut up for firewood, chipped up for mulch or landscaping, sold?

  3. CHEZZ says:

    Perhaps less people were in downtown on a very cold February day. Those who decide not to go to Monteith Park will miss the concerts on a new stage, and the folks enjoying the splash pad in the heat will not cool off…

  4. Hartman says:

    Hasso, Please include this event on your ongoing Bicycle Tour of Albany. Your take on this show would be appreciated.

    Albany Civic Theater, in partnership with the Oregon Community Foundation, is proud to present its first ever drag show, A Night of Drag-nificence. This show will be hosted by Nicole Onoscopi, a Portland area drag queen who earned the title of Miss Gay Oregon XLVIII for the 2021-2022 season. Nicole’s performances are humorous, uplifting and fun, and she often does a combination of live and lip-synching routines for her events. The night will follow Nicole and several other drag queens from across Oregon as they sing, dance, and enchant the audience to a variety of popular music.

    We look forward to seeing the wide range of talent that will be joining Nicole on the evening of February 25th, 2023.

    • Hasso Hering says:

      No thanks. Not my thing.

      • hj.anony1 says:

        OMG! Why not Hasso? Admission is FREE!!!!
        I had to look their website. True. Shame on me, i know.

      • Cap B. says:

        I read the drag show is sold out, and that’s good. I know it will be a success.

        Hasso, you didn’t have to tell us it (drag shows) isn’t your thing. We knew that. So, I take it we won’t see a photo on your blog of your bike parked in front of the Albany Civic Theater on the day of the drag show?

    • Al Nyman says:

      Do you suppose you will ever grow up.

    • MarK says:

      You retired too soon! I’m sure you would have enjoyed taking your students to this “performance” (I prefer to call it a “spectacle”).

  5. Hpeg1359 says:

    Who ever is in CONTROL of this NEEDS FIRED!!!

  6. WW&WW says:

    Cap B. is right. There’s nobody at the core of downtown. I expected there to be at least a dozen people protesting at yesterday’s tree-cutting show. Alas, I was the only one there. But I did record some awesome video.

    I hear tales from Albany’s geriatrics about what life downtown was like back when they were my age (mid-20s.) Stories about places like the Albany Underground and Roba’s and boat racing. The Albany downtown of back-then seems like a place I’d like to be now.

    • Cap B. says:

      Thank you, mid-20s WW&WW, for protesting in person on the first day of the tree cutting in Monteith Park. I wrote a letter to the editor of the D-H suggesting a protest, but, alas, my letter did not get printed. (The editor doesn’t like me, and I don’t like her, so there!, Madam Editor.) I don’t protest in person nowadays because “the-other-side-of-the-issue” people can show up and things can turn violent.

  7. Robin Steele says:

    Progress. Or is it?

  8. Phillip Noe says:

    Hasso in his article said this of the climate change crisis… “No crisis has been apparent around here.”
    Given the reality that climate change
    Is the most dangerous threat to humanity Hasso’s opinion
    of what is “apparent” needs to be enlightened by the reality.

    • Cap B. says:

      Hear, Hear!! Maybe Hasso is reflecting on why some of the un-enlightened among the citizenry of Albany are climate change deniers. Hopefully, Hasso, himself, already is enlightened (but, apparently not about drag shows…and I don’t mean drag car races!!! Tee, hee!).


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