200-year-old tree in Raleigh's Moore Square cut down

ccampbell@newsobserver.comApril 3, 2013 

Crews spent Tuesday morning cutting the trunk of a 200-year-old oak tree -- the largest in downtown Raleigh's Moore Square -- into smaller pieces to haul away. The tree was deemed a safety hazard after arborists discovered major termite damage.

COLIN CAMPBELL — ccampbell@newsobserver.com

The oldest tree in downtown Raleigh’s Moore Square was cut down Tuesday morning, a victim of termites and other structural problems that had turned the stately oak into a safety hazard.

The 200-year-old tree towered over East Martin Street long before City Market was built across the street in 1913. Black Union soldiers fighting in the Civil War reportedly slept under its canopy.

A study of Moore Square’s many trees uncovered the oak’s hazards and determined it could not be saved. The findings – presented to the Raleigh City Council on Tuesday – said that most of the tree’s younger neighbors remain healthy.

But tree experts told the council that the square needs better protection from cars and large crowds, which can damage tree roots and soil. Big festivals are also discouraged.

“In 60 years, you’re looking at 65 percent of that canopy gone if we don’t plan ahead,” said Christopher Counts, a landscape architect who oversaw the study.

News & Observer is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service