Prairie Village Public Works officials are planning to begin removing ash trees from city property early this fall in an effort to combat the spread of the Emerald Ash Borer.
The Prairie Village City Council on Monday approved a plan that will allow for the removal of around 100 ash trees throughout the city. The trees first targeted for removal will be those in the worst condition and those that have trunks smaller than 12 inches in diameter. Crews will replace the trees they remove with new species this fall as well.
Public Works Director Keith Bredehoeft said Monday that the city would be sending letters to residents in the coming days alerting them to the tree removal plans and inviting them to an open house community meeting where they can come to get more detailed answers about the city’s actions as well as their choices for replacement types.
Removal operations are expected to begin in September, Bredehoeft said.
In April, Mission Hills began enacting a similar plan, removing 168 ash trees from city property in anticipation of the arrival of the Emerald Ash Borer. The first confirmed case of an Emerald Ash Borer in northeast Johnson County came in June when environmental officials found three adults in a tree trap in Roeland Park.
Prairie Village budgeted $50,000 for 2014 to begin addressing the Emerald Ash Borer issue. There are approximately 700 ash trees in the city right-of-way and parks in Prairie Village, and public works expects the city’s response to the threat of the Emerald Ash Borer will take several years. The city this year will only be removing trees, but Bredehoeft said it may consider applying an anti-EAB treatment to some specimens in coming years.
A map of the ash trees slated for removal this year is embedded below.