Some residents in Chicago's Andersonville neighborhood are fighting to save their trees.
Between 12 and 15 mature trees in the neighborhood may need to be removed to replace a more than 100-year-old water main. The project could impact trees on four streets: Summerdale, Berwyn, Farragut and Balmoral avenues.
"I love them. I love when I walk the neighborhood and look up at all the gorgeous trees," said Abbey Evans, who has lived in Andersonville for two years.
Over the past few months residents have actively worked to stop the trees from coming down, saying the mature trees provide environmental benefits, as well as shade, cooling and beauty.
Ald. Harry Osterman said the project has been placed on hold as he works with the mayor's office on a solution to both save the trees and provide clean water.
"Some of these trees are 60 to 70 years old," Osterman said. "So losing some of them would be difficult. We do plant 100 trees a year in this neighborhood. These trees are part of the character of our community."
In a statement to NBC 5, the Department of Water Management said it "does everything possible to save trees when performing work on water infrastructure."
"We estimate the number of trees that may need to be removed on a project following the IEPA procedural and environmental rules that apply to underground utility separation that can include tree roots," spokeswoman Megan Vidis said. "The final determination on the number of trees to be removed can only be made during excavation."
In the meantime, a petition to "save the trees" is circulating among residents.