Kent tearing down trees against some neighbors' will

KENT, Wash. -- The city of Kent is cutting down close to 100 trees along a prominent street and many neighbors don't like it.

City Public Works manager, Tim LaPorte, tells KOMO News the 40-year-old maple trees and their roots are tearing up the sidewalks, the streets and storm drains along James Street.

However, several neighbors claim the city decided on their own, without public input, to tear down the trees. Many want the city to keep the trees and keep repairing the sidewalks.

They also don't like that the city is leaving behind, for now, a street filled with unsightly tree stumps.

"It looks horrible," says long time resident, Sarah Rogers. "They just took all the branches off."

But LaPorte says repairs to sidewalks and streets over the years are adding up to millions of dollars.

The city is in the process of removing the trees and replacing them with trees that don't have such aggressive roots.