We neighbors of Plaza Vera Cruz park have reached out to City of Santa Barbara Parks regarding a large tree and its potential danger from falling limbs. It’s also become a smelly urinal for the park’s homeless people.
This large Eucalyptus polyanthemos tree has now reached its maturity and is inches away from our fence. A massive branch has grown over our fence and property line, and it hangs above an occupied bedroom. The city is aware that branches can break and have caused extensive damage. Our fear is that with old age or wind, this branch will come crashing down and will damage our house or kill the occupant. This alarms the entire family.
The city did come and trim two branches, but this is insufficient. It didn’t create any preventative damage or risk.
Unfortunately, Plaza Vera Cruz is a haven for the homeless. Many are intoxicated, and sadly, they use this large tree to hide themselves from the street as they urinate against our fence. It even comes inside our property. We have proof of their urine and their bowel movements in the park. The stench smells so bad that we no longer open our bedroom or kitchen windows. We no longer have fresh air to enjoy.
Law enforcement is doing what they can, but City Parks & Recreation needs to remedy this situation. We have documents dating to 2008 that show over 1,600 violations in this park alone. The city won’t help fix this problem. To top it off, when the city wrote me back, they wanted me to pay to chop down their tree in their park.
We are in a Stage 3 drought, and we all know the trees will be falling. If that one branch cracks, I will be killed. We don’t know when that might happen, so I am trying now to prevent it. I know my life is more important than that tree.