Almost a dozen Floral Park residents complained Tuesday about a road construction project underway on Locust Street, saying workers are removing trees and destroying the look of the neighborhood.
"If this project continues the way it is, Floral Park will look like a golf course, or worse, like Queens Village," said resident Joan Donnelly, who has lived on Locust Street for more than 20 years.
The project, which the village had been planning since 2016, began at Locust Street in late June. Since then, residents have taken pictures and videos of trees being removed and posted them on Facebook. Residents said they didn’t receive a warning about tree removal.
Village officials, including Mayor Dominick Longobardi , said at a board of trustees meeting Tuesday that some trees had to be removed because their roots were making pavement uneven and skewing drainage routes on the street.
Longobardi said no village trustee wants trees removed, but it’s a necessary evil to make sure the road project is done properly. Village officials have vowed to replace the missing trees.
“Part of the problem with those trees is that they grow and, as every tree grows bigger, it creates a problem for our roads,” he told residents. “The road is in very bad shape. The road has to be redone.”
Donnelly and other residents called construction work "the deforestation of Locust Street." Donnelly said she believes the road reconstruction can be done without axing trees.
"This village was incorporated in 1908," she said. "Surely roads have been repaired and resurfaced without this magnitude of tree removal."