A Caltrans construction project to fix a long stretch of damaged sidewalk along Lincoln Boulevard got underway this week after criticism from City Councilwoman Ruth Galanter about the removal of trees prompted changes to the project.
About 43 ficus trees between La Tijera Boulevard in Westchester and Brooks Avenue in Venice are scheduled for removal, said Caltrans spokesman Joe Brazile.
The $127,000 repair project originally called for 100 trees to be uprooted.
Galanter, who represents the area, called on Caltrans to preserve as many trees as possible, calling the area's aesthetics "desperately in need of attention and care."
The roots of the decades-old ficus trees are pushing pavement upward and creating safety hazards, Brazile said.
Once the problem trees are removed and the sidewalks rebuilt, Caltrans will plant a "Brisbane box" tree for each ficus removed, Brazile said.
The work is being performed by Carson-based Damon Construction Co. and should be completed in October.