Posted on August 24, 2009
On the night of Tuesday, August 18, a very brief and violent storm pounded on New York City that left Central Park ravaged with tree limbs scattered and whole trees on their side and uprooted. Officials are saying it’s the worst damage the park has seen in decades. An estimated 500 trees were injured, but thankfully no one was hurt. Some trees destroyed dated from the 1920s or ‘30s, making the destruction an even bigger shame. The upper half of Central Park was hit hardest. Wood chippers have been hard at work since, eating away at the piles of fallen lumber needing to be discarded. The lumber being mulched into piles are being put to good use to moisten the soil throughout the park. Due to the infestation of the Asian longhorn beetles, the fallen trees unfortunately won’t be used for furniture or firewood. What’s even worse, many trees that lost large limbs are at risk of dying from decay, so those may need to be removed as well. The storm has also had an unfortunate effect on wildlife, leaving many creatures homeless. Many paths with tree limbs now lying across them have been marked off with yellow tape. Restoration could cost the Central Park Conservancy nearly $500,000, which will have to be paid by donors. Clean up crews still have a lot of work to do from the widespread damage even a week later.