Q. I have noticed that there have been quite a lot of trees and bushes cut down and left where they landed along Interstate 80 between Brady and east to LeClaire. It appears that there is no rhyme no reason to which trees were felled, some along the road, some in areas of interchanges. Why were these cut down? It does not give a very good impression on travelers passing through our area. -- Cheri, Long Grove, Iowa
Q. Why are so many trees of all varieties being cut along I-80, from the river and west? They are not just dead ash trees. Healthy looking cedars, other varieties of evergreens, and deciduous trees are being cut down. Why? What is the significance of the orange and blue painted markings? -- Jane, LeClaire
Q. Recently I have noticed that a large number of trees have been cut down along I-80 when they appeared to be healthy. Why? -- Nancy, Eldridge, Iowa
A. Several readers have asked about the trees being cut down along Interstate 80. A similar question was published on Dec. 23, 2017, in Ask the Times. Here was the Iowa Department of Transportation's response at that time:
Q. What are all of the orange markings on trees along Interstate 80 between U.S. 61 and the Mississippi River? -- Reader
A. We contacted the Iowa Department of Transportation to find out. Catherine Cutler, transportation planner, District 6, Iowa DOT, responded:
"We have a project coming to clear up some dead/sick trees and invasive species of trees. Orange markings indicate removal. Blue markings on a tree means it stays."
We also asked if this was an Emerald Ash Borer infestation? Cutler said, "Yes, some. Tree of heaven and red cedar are others. Cedars are a special nuisance as seeds are spread by birds and get into farm fields."
We contacted the Iowa Department of Transportation to see if there were any updates. Catherine Cutler, transportation planner, District 6, Iowa DOT, said, "We are clearing these trees for roadside safety and maintenance purposes. This effort is to provide an obstacle free area for errant vehicles that may unexpectedly leave the roadway, to improve sight distance for drivers, and to manage invasive species of vegetation."
Q. Who is supposed to clear sidewalks between Emerald Drive and Wisconsin Avenue in Davenport? There are stretches of sidewalks that have not been cleared as if Thursday, Nov. 29. It is my understanding that walkways are to be cleared within so many hours after the snow stops. – Pauline, Davenport
A. We contacted the Davenport public works department with your question. Nicole Gleason, Davenport public works director/assistant city administrator responded:
"Thanks for the question. This appears as if it would be private property. When the City sends in sidewalks for abatement, the focus is generally on school and bus zones. If there is a concern about a specific property, residents can call 563-326-7923 or submit online http://cityofdavenportiowa.com/services/public_works Public Works to inspect/abate."