Cut down oak tree in Wausau creates controversy - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Cut down oak tree in Wausau creates controversy

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A 130-year-old oak tree in Wausau has been cut down and it's raising some questions.

Marathon County officials say the tree was cut down to make the sledding hill at Pleasant View park safer. But the move has some people asking why.

A stump is all that's left of the tree that some neighbors call a local landmark. But city and county officials have been worried about the tree for a while. They say it was in the middle of the sledding run, causing concerns that someone could get injured and sue the city.

"We've been watching it, we did some things to mitigate the hazard we've added dirt on the uphill side we used hay bales to try and protect it but the fact of the matter is people were still hitting it, it was just a matter of time before we have a very serious accident," said Bill Duncanson, Wausau and Marathon County Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Department Director.

Some Wausau residents aren't happy with this decision. They say future generations will miss out on experiencing something their parents and grandparents cherished.

Officials say the oak tree showed signs of minor decay. But they say that's not the main reason for removing it.
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