A key Orange environmental group has accepted about 400 large pine trees will have to make way for a $25 million sports complex at Bloomfield.
However, the Environmentally Concerned Citizens of Orange group has called on Orange City Council to show them which trees will be removed.
And it wants council to instigate a major re-planting scheme with other species.
ECCO supports the development of the sportsground but is very concerned about the removal of trees.Neil Jones, ECCO president
The decision comes as council considers harvesting the trees for reuse once they are removed later this year.
ECCO president Neil Jones said they accepted the removal of pine trees, which were planted around the former Country Club golf course about 50 years ago, but would oppose the removal of large native trees at the site.
Mr Jones said the trees should be replaced by natives at the Bloomfield site and an offset planting project at council land on the Northern Distributor Road which was a proposed site for the sports complex.
"ECCO supports the development of the sportsground but is very concerned about the removal of trees," he said.
"[We] have sought an on-site inspection to identify which trees will be removed."
However, he said he had not had a response from council about a meeting.
Mr Jones said the Bloomfield site was "environmentally better" for the sportsground than the NDR site.
He said pine trees were not the best choice for public areas.
"There are much better species to be [grown] in open space than pinus radiata," he said.
"Some of the pine trees could be retained with good design," Mr Jones said.
"Pine trees have a naturally shorter life than natural vegetation."
Mr Jones said ECCO also supported people who were opposed to tree removal in Orange.
"ECCO applauds those people who are concerned about the vegetation that is going to be removed and hopes they will make their voices heard to council during the development application process," he said.
Orange mayor Cr Reg Kidd, who has described pine trees as 'feral', said the lopped trees could be sent to a mill at Oberon where they could be recycled into pine timber for re-use and smaller branches could be used for woodchips.
He said the pine trees were planted on the site of the old Orange airfield to define the fairways of the golf course.
Cr Kidd said he supported replacing the trees with natives around the sports complex.
He said pine trees had a limited life. "When they age they start to rot," he said.
Cr Kidd said six pine trees had fallen at his own property during a storm this month.
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