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just outside the city limits of santa clarita valley poetry more than two hundred and fifty years old russell's the wind is picking up dust off nearby hillsides that have been flattened and script for new housing developments forty two year old john quigley is perched on a small platform about forty feet up the tree he's been living in these cramped quarters for the past three weeks to keep the tree from being removed it's a little tough the biggest thing is it be nice to take a shower but this has become something larger then but my personal comfort obviously local activists recruited quickly to sit in the oak after more diplomatic attempt to save it failed la county is requiring a local developer to remove the tree so i can widen a nearby road the county says the road needs to be expanded for new housing developments quickly and the tree have become celebrities in this quiet bedroom community scores of schoolchildren have sent letters and pictures address to quickly care of the oak tree
every day people like ad duty and her three kids arrived to check on the tree it's not that it is semi sovereign something about conservation and they not respecting meats are on this day folk singer fred starner as i might say this day those same activists wheatley had been trying for years to slow the march of development in the santa clarita valley the clamor over the tree has given their cars a boost many people move to the valley to get away from this city and claim their little patch of paradise at the foot of crumpled hills studded with graceful oaks for years the largely conservative community seemed to
tolerate the fast pace of growth in the area but katherine flynn a substitute teacher from valencia says many people have been concerned about development they just didn't think they could do anything about it we feel that no one is listening and no one really clears our representative says downtown la county have no concern whatsoever with the speed in which the houses are being built from his roost in the old joan quigley says the tree has spurred people who've never been active before to mobilize this community they didn't know that this tree was scheduled to be cut when they found out they started mobilizing and they have fought for this tree and there has been an inspiration in our set and see the politicians fun listening to them instead of the wealthy developers to county officials have offered to replant the tree elsewhere they say the road must be expanded to prevent future traffic congestion tony bell is a spokesman for county supervisor mike antonovich he says his office is getting calls from people who
say it's okay to move the tree the new road will have brand new trees it will have an equestrian wave by plant and the type of sidewalks that are safe for pedestrians it's really a question of public safety despite assurances from a tree moving company the activists and several arbor is doubt the tree would survive the move and the activists say the only reason the road needs to be bigger is to accommodate the proposed new hall ranch development which will bring more than twenty thousand new homes to the air year the project has yet to be approved because the developer nice to show it has a water supply for all those homes quigley supporters say another reason they oppose newhall ranch is because the santa clarita valley is a vital wildlife corridor to resist have a key is with friends of the santa clara river does is to trap candidates one of their riches while at corners to the santa clara river it's where you can still find mountain lions you can still find an
occasional bear you can find mule deer and bobcats coyotes fox badgers black jack rabbit survey key is standing between the old and what until recently was a wild free now it's boxed into concrete channel made of cement mixers and other high school teacher katherine flynn says by sitting in the tree john ridley has given people a sense of all even if they cut this tree it will make people think in the future about about what's happening and hispanic activists have submitted a list of requests to the county among other things they want a full environmental study of the road project a small park around the tree and a meeting between county officials and community members john quigley has vowed he will stay in the oak tree until he's sure it's safe but the developer charged with moving the trees says they are planning to go ahead with the relocation perhaps as soon as next week for kpcc news
Tree Sitter
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KPCC-FM (Radio station : Pasadena, Calif.)
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KPCC (Pasadena, California)
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Segment Description
Tree sitter John Quigley is still topping an old oak tree near Santa Clarita and he's attracting a lot of attention. At just about every hour of the day, dozens of on-lookers crane their necks to see him. A slew of news vans keeps track of his every move. Community members say the plight of the tree is just a small part of the larger problem of massive development in the area. KPCC's Ilsa Setziol reports.
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News Report
open space; urban sprawl
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Copyright Holder: KPCC
Producer: Setziol, Ilsa
Producing Organization: KPCC-FM (Radio station : Pasadena, Calif.)
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Identifier: TreeSitter112102-2 (unknown)
Format: audio/wav
Generation: Master
Duration: 00:05:32
Identifier: TreeSitter112102-1 (unknown)
Format: MiniDisc
Generation: Original
Duration: 00:05:32
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Chicago: “Tree Sitter,” 2002-11-21, KPCC, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed August 20, 2022,
MLA: “Tree Sitter.” 2002-11-21. KPCC, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. August 20, 2022. <>.
APA: Tree Sitter. Boston, MA: KPCC, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from