Trees make way for sewer works

A number of trees will be affected during the repair of the trunk sewer along Bernadotte Street, which is being repaired under an emergency contract.

The trees need to be removed, as a 6m deep trench needs to be excavated to relay the pipe.

A series of collapses along the main trunk sewer in May forced eThekwini Municipality to replace the entire sewer line of over 500m. The initial replacement was unsuccessful, resulting in an emergency repair.

“The free running soils and high water table require close coupled shoring along a stretch of 320m,” said Laurence Davies of the water and sanitation department. “This shoring will be within 1m from the centreline of the sewer pipe and it is not possible to place this shoring without damaging the trees.

After consultation with our environmental control officer, Jon Marshall and the district manager of parks and recreation, Bruce Blake they agreed the only solution is to remove these trees.”

The nine affected trees include a number of fever trees and some of the albizia species. “Although the trees are indigenous to the province, they are not indigenous to this region, having been planted for their ‘decorative’ quality,” said Davies.

The trees will be cut down, de-stumped and smaller branches will be chipped. The chippings will be delivered to the parks department and the balance of the trees will be disposed of at a solid waste site. Once the repair of the sewer is complete, 20 trees of around 3m in height will be planted by a registered nursery along the affected line.

Work is expected to be completed in April.

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