FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – A project to move Fort Lauderdale’s famous, century-old rain tree finally got underway Thursday.
The giant tree is being moved closer to the New River to make way for a new high-rise and was set to be in its new location, about 200 feet away, in a few more days. Video released by the developer shows day one of the process.
It’s been about a decade in the making. City commissioners approved the move all the way back in 2013.
“This has been a long time coming; we’ve been working on this for 10 years,” developer Asi Cymbal said. “We hired the preeminent tree preservationist in the world, the team that preserves and relocates the biggest, most giant rain trees all over the world.”
Protesters had voiced concerns that the tree could die if it were moved.
“I think that’s great that they were able to move it,” resident Peter Pressley said. “I know everybody in the community wanted the tree to be saved and this is the perfect way to do it.”
The new development will be called Riverwalk Raintree Residences.
The developer is picking up the roughly $500,000 tab for the relocation.
#TeamFTL continues to monitor the careful movement of our rain tree to its new home- closer to the #NewRiver, just north of its current spot. 🌊 Protecting our hundred-year-old tree during this process is our top priority & we will update you as the move continues this week! 🌳 pic.twitter.com/JJSHTdL4nn— City of Fort Lauderdale (@FTLCityNews) August 2, 2022