The fight to save dozens of established trees in Saanich was front and centre at Monday evening’s council meeting.

The trees on Grange are on the cutting block to make way for a new sewage pipe.

However, when area residents found out that 29 mature Garry Oaks and Douglas Firs would have to be cut down and up to 20 more possibly removed so the pipe can run under the sidewalk instead of the roadway, there was public outrage.

The removal is to make way for part of the 19-kilometre sewage pipe that will run from the Capital Regional District’s (CRD) new McLoughlin treatment plant to the Hartland landfill.

Several residents spoke out in support of the trees and council has told residents it is working to find a better option.

“I’m very hopeful with our new council that they’re going to take a stand for the trees of Grange Road, Finnerty Road and Harrow Woods,” says concerned resident Francis Litman.

“It’s extremely important that they understand trees are a public health matter and trees are the hardest working unpaid employee that they have.”

Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes says they’re talking to the CRD and looking at options such as running the pipe under the roadway or relocating it to a nearby street where trees won’t be impacted.

Haynes says he’s hopeful there will be some good news later this week.

Tess van Straaten