UPDATED: NSTAR Cuts Trees at Saxonville Beach

"NSTAR devastated Saxonville Beach ... so sad. Not a serene oasis anymore," said Framingham resident Joan Calderone.

UPDATED at 10 a.m. with NSTAR comments


Saxonville beach is no longer a serene oasis, according to one resident. And she is not alone in her outrage over NSTAR cutting the trees at the town's beach, located off Route 126.

"NSTAR devastated Saxonville Beach. They came back to make sure even the small trees and wildlife are gone ... so sad. Not a serene oasis anymore," said Framingham resident Joan Calderone.

"So unnecessary and such a terrible impact on the aesthetics. I'm so sad about it," said Saxonville resident Audrey Hall.

Calderone told Framingham Patch that NSTAR said they were "protecting consumers from power outages from the hurricane coming up the coast."

"Seriously?" said Calderone. "This had nothing to do with this possible hurricane, as we all know."

NSTAR told WBZ-TV it has made improvements to ensure quicker response the next time the area is hit with a major storm.

"Trees are the number one cause of power outages and one tree coming in contact with a high-voltage transmission line, or even coming too close to it, can interrupt power to tens-of-thousands of customers," said NSTAR spokesperson Michael Durand.

But Saxonville residents disagree with NSTAR's assessment of the situation.

"They even cut down trees that wouldn't possibly get near the wires. Many were maybe 12 feet tall, lining the border of the parking lot and path to the beach," said Calderone.

Framingham resident Christine Suau said she is upset about the "devastation that NSTAR continues to create."

"It's absolutely heartbreaking," looking at Saxonville Beach.

Hall, a Town Meeting member for Precinct 3, which represents Saxonville, told Framingham Patch she heard Framingham Parks & Recreation "negotiated a replanting plan for the beach with NSTAR."

She said she has no idea what the plan looks like.

"Right now the whole area looks like a high wire and pole farm because that's all you see across vast open space. The town has a lot if work to do to beautify its designated "scenic road," said Hall.

"We previously discussed the level of work needed at Saxonville Beach with town officials and agreed at the time to delay it until after this year's beach season," said Durand. "We've completed our tree removal work there, ground the tree stumps and are currently working with Weston Nurseries on the upcoming planting of lower growing species that are compatible with our lines."


Framingham Patch was the first to report on NSTAR's tree cutting in Framingham in late May. It began when residents contacted Patch to tell us about tree cutting at Reardon Park and Playground.

Later, NSTAR began cutting trees in other Framingham neighborhoods and then moved into neighboring communities of Sudbury and Wayland cutting trees.

At one point, NSTAR agreed to a moratorium on cutting, but it was short-lived.

Selectmen once held NSTAR permits hostage until they could get a clear explanation on why the tree cutting was happening and a complete report on NSTAR's tree cutting plans for the Town of Framingham.

Jeffrey Cox October 25, 2012 at 01:28 PM
This is a concern. We should have better information to know what this plan is. I hope that the PATCH can publish the plan.
Kathleen M. Howland October 25, 2012 at 01:53 PM
NSTAR must communicate with the neighborhoods about their actions. They cannot simply work as if they own the space. They have rights but not at the expense of other's rights.
Dave Lenane October 25, 2012 at 09:37 PM
I walked my neighborhood today and while I would have to agree that NStar's action do indeed seem drastic (to say the least). I would say that now is the time we see if our Town Committee can hear the voices of the people it represents. First lets see how we get thru the coming storm here in town. My position has been and remains the NStar should be held responsible for returning the land from the barren wasteland look it has now. I mean seriously Saxonville Beach looks like something out of a Sci-Fi movie. Back in June we heard how "Outraged" some of our politicians were. What did that do for us? This is one of those areas were we all need to keep up the pressure on NStar and the Town of Framingham to right what has been so egregiously wronged. I mean Saxonville Beach now looks like a puddle in the middle of a dirt field. The really funny thing is that Lake Road's street sign is designated as being a "Scenic Road" What a joke that is now that NStar has rolled thru! Hey Chris Walsh and Ton Conroy, where is your response to this??? Do we get to be "Mentioned" in a bill again? Oh boy!!!
Joan G October 31, 2012 at 07:21 PM
Interestingly, NSTAR said they had to clear cut everything around these high power lines before this storm hit to prevent power outages, even eliminating short trees that couldn't possibly interfere with the extremely high wires, leaving a barren wasteland behind for all abutting residents to live with. Well, guess what? Those of us around Saxonville Beach have lost power twice during and after the storm and after all trees have been cleared around the high power lines. Why has NSTAR needlessly demolished parks instead of focusing on branches that actually touch low wires? As we know Reardon Park has also been needlessly devastated by NSTAR's clear cutting, NSTAR again citing "prevention of power outages," however those residents lost power, too even after all clear cutting around high power lines. Now, there are reports that there are downed [low] wires, possibly live ones in that same neighborhood, yet NSTAR refuses to address this safety concern. Why does the Town allow NSTAR to control our environment? There should be remedies for those of us living in and paying taxes in these neighborhoods. The remedies should come straight from NSTAR's deep pockets!


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