Logan neighborhood loses willow grove to city’s ax

LOGAN— A once thickly forested oasis for a Logan neighborhood is being torn apart by city workers. Daniel Herrero, whose family resides in this neighborhood, said the city began work without consulting the residents. The now half-destroyed willow grove is located just east of 1000 West at about 700 South.This area of Logan is known for its willow trees. Cache Valley was once called “Willow Valley,” according to Mendon’s town Web site. Many are upset by the city’s actions. Neighbors say they feel the city is taking a beautiful area and making it into an eyesore.There will be a meeting gather public input about the community’s wants and needs for the park at 7 p.m. Feb. 17 at Woodruff Elementary School. Logan Parks and Recreation Director Russ Akina said the uniqueness of public land is that everyone has an equal right to it.”When we were constructing the Boulevard Trail in 2009, we worked closely with residents on the planting of park strip trees because in some instances the trees blocked their view of the south valley. We are committed to working closely with neighbors here, as well, to address concerns such as privacy,” Akina said. He also said that the city is working hard to meet everyone’s needs and that the trees are being cut down in an effort to eliminate risk.”I feel there’s no sense,” Herrero said about the meeting on Feb. 17. Herrero feels that the decision has already been made by the city to cut down all of these trees so there’s no sense in having a meeting to decide what to do with the area.The city is destroying wildlife for a park in a neighborhood where the people all have large yards, Herrero said. He also feels that before the city builds a park they need to look into the lifestyle of the people.There are many parks in this area of Logan, but the city has certain standards they have set for the amount of parks in Logan.According to the 2006 Parks, Recreation, Trails, and Open Space Master Plan for the city of Logan, the city standard is six acres of park land for every 1,000 residents. They also like the parks to be a quarter of a mile apart although this doesn’t always happen, Akina said.Herrero and 150 others like him signed a petition to prevent the disturbance of this area. Akina has seen the petition and said that perhaps the outcome of the Feb. 17 meeting will provide some guidance for the city.Herrero is doubtful that the city will change their actions with the park, but he does hope that dogs will be allowed at this park. Almost all of the parks in Logan are not dog friendly and they’ve taken down the soccer goals. It doesn’t make sense to have a park where you can’t play sports or walk with your pet, Herrero said.

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