Damaged banyans slowly growing back
What ever happened to the protected banyan trees that were trimmed by maintenance workers at the Hawaii Convention Center?
Answer: While the trees probably will never look the same, they are slowly growing back, with the help of a private arborist hired by the convention center, said Lester Chang, director of the city Department of Parks and Recreation.
The city is "satisfied" with the work, according to Chang, who said the structure of the trees was heavily damaged when their branches were cut. He said the convention center took responsibility for mistakenly pruning the trees facing the Ala Wai Canal.
"The correction is not like you can just fix the wall or patch. It's a living thing," he said. "It will never be like it should be."
About a half-dozen banyan trees were inadvertently cut in October.
Joe Davis, general manager for the convention center, attributed the mistake to "overzealous" maintenance workers who trimmed the banyans in October.
He could not give an estimate cost for restoration, but said the effort is paying off.
"The trees are coming back," he said. "It's showing great progress."
The half-dozen banyans are among some 200 trees in the city's Exceptional Trees List, chosen for their historical value, age and rarity, Chang said. Any type of work done on those trees needs approval by the Arborist Advisory Committee.
Mary Steiner, chief executive of the Outdoor Circle, said the situation was resolved in a fair manner. "It's one of those really bad things that happened because they weren't paying attention," she said.
This update was written by Alexandre Da Silva.
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