Rivière-des-Prairies woman stumped about damage caused by city trees

Click to play video: 'Overgrown trees planted by Rivière des Prairies borough major nuisance for resident' Overgrown trees planted by Rivière des Prairies borough major nuisance for resident
WATCH: Having trees on your property is no doubt enjoyable, but the maintenance can be problematic for some homeowners. Global's Phil Carpenter has the story of one Rivière-des-Prairies woman who is struggling with tree upkeep – Aug 1, 2018

There are some things that Cynthia Paolini really likes about the two trees growing just beside her fence.

“When it’s super sunny, it gives you some sort of a shade. So we enjoy,” Paolini said. “We don’t hate the trees.”

But they’re about 30 years old and have grown so big, she says, they’re starting to cause problems.  For one, when it’s windy the branches of one tree become a nuisance.

“It actually hits the chimney,” she said, laughing, “and you can hear it — pff, pff,” trying to mimic the sound.

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The thing is, the borough of Rivière-des-Prairies planted the trees, so she contacted them to have the branches cut.  That was three years ago.

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Paolini says nothing was done.  Furthermore, this spring she discovered another problem.

“I have roots of the tree that are literally sticking out of my grass. All my walkway pavé has popped up!”

She claims the slabs for the walkway are so badly damaged that she has to be careful to not trip.  Now she doesn’t know what can be done to fix that problem and says the borough told her to not touch the roots.

“I’m looking at like thousands of dollars just for the walkway,” she fumed.

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Click to play video: 'Montreal storm tears down trees, power lines' Montreal storm tears down trees, power lines
Montreal storm tears down trees, power lines – Aug 23, 2017

In a statement to Global News, the borough claims that one tree was pruned in January 2016 and that the other will be pruned later this year.  They also say that roots on the soil surface from trees is a normal inconvenience and doesn’t constitute serious damage.  The borough insists it’s up to Paolini to fix the slabs in her walkway.

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But Paolini says she shouldn’t be paying for the repair when she didn’t plant the trees.

“At this point, if I have to get a lawyer I have no choice, because I can’t keep it like this,” she told Global News.  “It makes no sense!”

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