Cherry (blossom?) Trees Chopped in Woodley Park


“Dear PoPville,

Last week on either Wednesday or Thursday, the construction crews at the Wardman Tower on Connecticut Ave chopped down a good number (I would guess 10 or so) Cherry trees from around the building, right across from the metro station. I’ve always loved this building and the beautiful, green grounds around it. I understand obviously the ground needs to be torn up for construction and everything, but the razing of so many trees on one of the city’s main thoroughfares seems like a big shame, I hope they don’t do this to the entire grounds.”

13 Comment

  • Are you sure they chopped them up? A mature cherry blossom tree is worth $$$. They might have just transplanted them for safe keeping or re-sale.

  • That’s unfortunate, and the change in the view up there is quite shocking. But the great thing about trees is that they’re a renewable resource, and new trees will almost certainly be planted throughout the property, even if the old ones couldn’t be saved.

  • According to the WP listserv the developer said the following: “The trees that were removed are consistent with the attached plans that we presented to the ANC, City and community a couple of years ago. Many were removed to make way for the new parking garage, and several others were in poor condition. We will be heavily re-planting the site as is shown on the attached plans as part of the work, in a manner that is consistent with the historic character of the neighborhood. These plans were obviously heavily vetted and approved by the Historic Preservation Office, DDOE and DC Arborist. “

    • That new parking garage better be completely underground! I am guessing it will be b/c the new condo owners aren’t going to want to look at a garage.

      • Wardman Tower is on the registry of historic buildings so I cannot imagine anyone would approve a parking garage above ground beside it. The hotel built a new underground on on the Woodley Road side a few years back and you don’t notice it at all, so I’m guessing this will be the same (although I have no idea where they would even fit it near the Wardman Tower side.

        I worked at that hotel years ago and they spent a small fortune to maintain the property and ensure it looked beautiful. I have no doubt they will continue that with the tower going to condos. It’s been so amazing to me to see how much the grounds of the hotel have changed in the last decade with the new residential building and now this. The Wardman Tower was always such a big selling feature for the hotel, I almost feel bad they are losing it. But it really should be a residential building. It was really gorgeous on the inside.

        I’m sure the plans are somewhere online/public.

        • The main 1970s part of the hotel, along with the pieces built in the 50’s and 60’s, are all starting to show their age. I wonder how long it will be till those parts are demolished and rebuilt to match the Wardman Tower and the new residential building to the west, or at least re-faced to match.

        • The Wardman, and the Sheraton before it, have been good neighbors for many years. While it can be unsettling to see all the construction and the change, based on past history (including recent history with the current owners), I feel confident the final result will look lovely and have nice trees to replace the ones that were removed.

  • I wouldn’t worry. To chop down a tree in this city practically requires a UN convention, so I’m sure they are planning to re-plant everything to look even better than it did before. I’m sure the decision to chop down the trees was vetted with no fewer than 30 municipal government agencies, several federal oversight boards and I bet even the ghost of John James Audobon weighed in on the matter just for good measure.

  • This building will soon feature a couple handful of multi-million-dollar condos. This isn’t some inept World Bank spouse flipping row houses in Bloomingdale. You can bet that trees will be replanted and then some.

  • This must be why just yesterday, I noticed that the Marriott Wardman tower was undergoing renovation – usually, I just see the trees there, but they were gone.

    I’m sure they will replant the area, but it won’t be a good as it used to be for quite some time – mature cherry trees are a treat with their wide area of blossoms, and the trees take some decades to get to that size.

  • Can we really be sure what happened to the trees? This wouldn’t be the first time someone lied about chopping down a cherry tree…

  • Emmaleigh504

    Sometimes trees have to be cut down. Generally the pretty ones like cherries are replaced. It’s really not usually a big deal. I think is area will be just fine when they finish.

  • Like you, I was shocked and saddened when I saw this. I counted more than 10 tree stumps and am pretty sure nothing was transplanted. I live one block north, and loved watching the change of seasons through the bloom of flowers and trees that grew here. It will be sometime before the replacement plantings will reach the mature beauty of what it replaces.

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