Three trees believed to be 150-300 years old have been saved from being cut down to make way for a new housing development.
A 207-lot residential development off Leeds Parade has been approved by Orange City Council.
Although the developers sought to remove the eucalypt trees it will be a condition of approval that the trees be saved and the area around them becomes public space.
We need to preserve a significant area around them so people can walk around in safetyCr Kevin Duffy
However councillors said they were concerned about the risk of branches falling from such big, old trees.
Cr Kevin Duffy said the trees should be saved but were not ideal for city areas.
"If we need to preserve them we need to preserve a significant area around them so people can walk around in safety," he said.
Mayor Cr Reg Kidd said other trees needed to be planted around the old trees.
"These trees will eventually die. We need to have it as a regeneration area," he said.
Cr Kidd said he was also concerned about falling limbs.
"It's great to see the preservation of these trees," he said.
"[But] these trees, standing as individual trees, will be more prone to getting wind damage and storm damage."
Cr Sam Romano said saving the trees would be an expense to council.
"The cost is what concerns me," he said.
"The council has to buy [this] land. They are not just going to give it to the council to have it as parkland.
"They we're stuck with, we have to maintain that."
Cr Stephen Nugent said there was not a lot of other green space in the estate for passive or active recreation considering the increase in population in the area.
In the public forum before council approved the development application on Tuesday night Environmentally Concerned Citizens of Orange secretary Nick King said the group supported council sparing the trees.
He said trees of that age would have a lot of hollows and space to provide refuge for birds and insects.
ECCO committee member Neil Jones said there was a need for level and accessible parkland in residential areas.
A report to council said the trees should be saved.
"The largest of the trees has a trunk diameter of approximately 2000 millimetres, placing the trees in the order of between 150 to 300 years of age. On this basis, the native trees are significant specimens worthy of retention," it said.
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