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Old Hickory Boulevard Along Williamson and Davidson County Line to Get Major Facelift With New Trees

6/24/2014

Landscape Enhancements to Begin

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Tree on a cityscapeNASHVILLE, TENN. – In a public-private partnership that includes the cities of Nashville and Brentwood, along with the private and non-profit sector, a two-phase landscape renovation project began this Spring along the stretch of Old Hickory Boulevard that is west of Interstate 65 from Franklin Road to Granny White Pike .

The aging Bradford Pear trees in the median gave way to a wide and colorful variety of approximately 200 trees. The new trees are better suited for this section of Old Hickory Boulevard, which is designated as a Tennessee Scenic Highway.

Forest PanseyThe project, which will be done in two phases, is a collaborative effort between Metro Nashville Public Works, Nashville Electric Service, Tennessee Department of Transportation, Maryland Farms Owners Association, Nashville Tree Foundation, Marketplace at Maryland Farms and the City of Brentwood.

“These landscape enhancements will provide an inviting and beautiful gateway to both Nashville and Brentwood,” Mayor Karl Dean said. “I am proud of the public-private partnership that made the new trees possible, and I know residents and visitors will enjoy them for many years to come.”

Foster HollyOver the course of time, the Bradford Pears grew too large for the median and were difficult to maintain. The aging trees also were easily damaged by strong winds.

“This project is the positive result of several key stakeholders working together,” said Brentwood Mayor Betsy Crossley. “The removal of the failing Bradford Pears, along with the implementation of this restoration plan, will ensure the future beauty of the corridor.”

The new trees are a variety of species including magnolia, Okame cherry, redbud, sugar maple, Nuttall oak and holly.

“Highways are tough environments for trees” said Skip Heibert of Heibert & Associates, the landscape architect hired by the Maryland Farms Office Park to select the trees. “This project required trees with some very specific characteristics.”

Sweet BaySince many of the trees will be planted near overhead wires, they had to be a variety that would not grow into the wires as they mature. Trees also were selected to provide seasonal color and require minimal maintenance.

An added value of the project is that it will serve as a living demonstration of how electric power lines and trees may coexist. Through this planting and the promotion of power line friendly trees on their website, this project continues NES’s commitment to sustaining the urban forest.

The project will be done in two phases. Phase I, from Franklin Road to Westpark Drive, is now complete. Phase II will continue to Granny White Pike. Schedule and completion for the second phase is largely weather dependent.