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'Save the Trees' protest planned against development near Roswell veterans' memorials

Some Roswell residents are planning a protest against a proposed development that would cut down — and replant — dozens of trees near two war memorials.

On Dec. 17, a group of local conservationists plan to protest the city's "City Green Master Plan & Design Project," which is a plan to develop the lawn around city hall. The plan would require moving two veterans' memorials.

The plan will cut down about half a football field of trees to build a lawn, then replant some trees and add temporary shade covers for special events, according to the online summary. Two veterans' memorials — the Faces of War Memorial, a monument that honors Vietnam War veterans, and a World War II memorial — will be relocated as well.

RELATED: Development planned near historic Mimosa Hall in Roswell

RELATED: Roswell arts group surveys public for master plan

Michael Litten, a former Roswell mayoral candidate, said when he first heard about the $15 million plan he thought it was ridiculous.

"There are a lot of things they could do with $15 million besides cut up a lawn," he said.

Roswell Mayor Jere Wood said one of the main purposes of the development will be to connect city hall to downtown. 

"City hall should be part of a small town, and it's not," he said. So far the plan has received general but not unanimous support.

The mixed-use, pedestrian-friendly plan is modeled after similar developments across the country. It will include an amphitheater, a promenade and a lawn.

The city council has yet to approve the plan. Wood said the timeline for construction, after approval, would be about one year.

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