Twin Cities summer solstice storms: Parks officials still assessing damage [UPDATE]
Minneapolis is still tallying the amount of trees knocked over during the weekend storms.
Photo: Andy Mannix
Following a weekend of powerful storms, parks officials in Minneapolis and St. Paul are still trying to assess the extensive damage left in the wake of heavy rainfall and dangerously high winds.
As of noon Monday, St. Paul has tallied about 400 public trees down, 26 of which landed on homes, says city spokesman Brad Meyer. All St. Paul streets have been opened, and they should have the few remaining trees cleared off houses today, but Meyer says it will take about three weeks to clean up all the debris.
They also haven't yet tallied the amount of trees on private property knocked over by the storm, which could well be "in excess of a couple hundred," he says.
St. Paul will collect branches or trees damaged in the storm from private residences if homeowners report them to the city by Friday, Meyer says.
A tree uprooted in south Minneapolis this weekend.
Photo: Andy Mannix
Over in Minneapolis, eight streets are still closed due to down power lines, says Dawn Sommers, parks and recreation spokeswoman. She predicts all eight will be cleared today.
Sommers says they haven't had time to tally fallen trees in Minneapolis yet, but will provide figures on damage later this afternoon. She wasn't sure how long it will take to clean everything up, but the city is currently working on removing trees from streets and public sidewalks.
"Our goal was to clear the street curb to curb, and sidewalks if they've been blocked," says Sommers. "Our first focus is really public safety."
According to the Star Tribune, about 52,000 homes in the Twin Cities are still without power.
Update [3:45 p.m.]:
St. Paul has now tallied 500 trees on public property knocked down from the storm, according to a news release. More than 2,000 public trees were damaged over the weekend.
Update [9:30 a.m.]
Minneapolis parks and city crews have cleared about 800 trees from city streets alone, according to Sommers. This doesn't include boulevard trees down on homes or private properties.
Sommers says they won't have a full count on storm damage until they've assessed and removed the rest of the fallen trees.
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