Our View: Brookswood not out of the woods

It seems to be Brookswood’s turn.

Township council put the community through a difficult time with a redevelopment proposal process that was ill-conceived from the start, and came to an appropriate end in the trash can.

But don’t expel that happy sigh just yet – not if you live in Brookswood, and especially not if you are the proud owner of some nice, big trees. There are still a couple of shoes just waiting to be dropped over at the Township Civic Facility.

Around the council table they are already talking about restarting the Brookswood process, despite an admission that they don’t have the budget or resources in place yet. If that sounds familiar, it’s because that’s how the recently aborted process got started.

We can only hope that the knuckle-rapping they incurred this time out (chatter around the council certainly suggests a healthy dose of contrition) will encourage mayor and councillors to sit back, wait awhile, and gather some better intel before deciding how to proceed again.

But those who have prized trees – and especially those with mature trees they might not want forever – will want to keep sharp. There’s renewed talk of a tree bylaw.

We’re not sure what it is that makes people feel so self-righteously about incurring the cost of tree maintenance on their neighbours who had the foresight – and generosity – to grow stands of trees that the entire community enjoys.

But we do know that every time a tree bylaw proposal comes forward, people who have been hemming and hawing about the aesthetic value of their personal forests take the safe route out – with an axe.

Council needs to decide whether or not there will be a tree bylaw, instead of raising the spectre again and again – each time costing more trees their lives.

And it needs to realize that the phenomenon will affect other communities as their trees mature to Brookswood’s standard.

If they can’t decide, they should at least decide not to.

– B.G.

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