The Black Hill community has continued to push back on the City of Ballarat's decision to harvest over 200 pine trees without community consultation, despite a report outlining the need for their removal.
The independent report from an arborist from Uber Arbor commissioned by the City of Ballarat outlined two potential options for the trees surrounding the Black Hill Swimming Pool.
The first includes removing all the trees from the area, with immediate re-vegetation to attract native fauna to begin upon their removal.
The second involved only removing trees that pose an "unnecessary risk" and conducting risk assessments on the remaining trees.
The report does not state how many of the more than 200 pine trees pose an "unnecessary risk", however states many of the trees are in a "poor structural state."
Black Hill resident Julian Whitta said whatever decision is made moving forward, his disappointment remains surrounding the lack of community consultation, even after the decision was made to remove the trees.
"Anything that impacts the local community needs to have community consultation," he said.
"The only reason we are up in arms currently is because it appears as though they tried to hide this from us until it was too late. Had they come forward at the start and said some of the trees had to go, I'm sure the community would have understood."
Looking to the future, Mr Whitta said making the decision of how many trees will be removed is just the first step in a long process the City of Ballarat needs to discuss with the Black Hill community.
"It's not as cut and dry as whether to get rid of all the trees or leave some standing," he continued.
"The reality is that cutting down the trees is just the first step. Where's the replacement plan? Where's the community consultation for that? Where's the timeline for harvesting and replanting? These are the things the community wants to know, and right now we are being left in the dark."
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