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What's the deal with this tree on EP? — Brooklynian

What's the deal with this tree on EP?

It seems to be buttressed by a one-off concrete contraption it is braced to with a steel band. It looks like without it, it would fall into the street. It's complete with a Jersey barrier to keep people from crashing into the concrete buttress.

I mean, the thing is obviously there to protect the tree, but why's this tree special enough to get this treatment rather than just getting taken out?


  • I know someone who works at the MTA. As part of the rehabilitation of the Brooklyn Botanic Garden Station on the Shuttle (several years ago....), the community was worried that the tree would suffer and had NYCT put up the concrete block to protect it. Several yards of concrete were used.

    In some ways it is amazing that the tree has lived given that they grow in girth. The strapping belt should be removed to prevent the tree from girdling itself - equivalent of a person chopping a line all around a tree and stopping the nutrient flow.

  • If it's only been a few years, it may be too soon for it to suffer, although it looks like the lower band has already given up.

    It doesn't seem like a viable fix in the long run, and it blocks the street in a way (although technically not a lane of traffic). It strikes me as a very unusual solution.

  • I suspect that folks felt the root structure was undermined by the rehabilitation of the station.

    Because the tree leans toward the street, the cement may also protect the tree from trucks that would have hit it as a result of passing too closely.

    The cement seems like a prime place for a mural.

  • I have wondered about this for a while. I repeat the question that eastbloc did and that I have wondered about every time I see it: Why is this tree so special that it warrants the ugly albeit impressively gargantuan cement block?

    Although, when giving directions I do enjoy saying "if you come across the worlds's biggest cement block holding up a huge tree you're going in the wrong direction". Besides the weirdness of it, are they planning on removing the block at some point?

  • I believe the concrete blocks are the beginning of a new Ratner luxury housing project. With a tree in the foundation of your future apartment building he will be able to charge double the rent as well as receive a green certificate of approval.