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Trees cut after Almeda fire will be put to use

I’m curious about two things: To the north of Valley View Road is what appears to be a holding area for logged material from the Almeda fire. Is this material going to be used for stream enhancement and/or biomass for the restructuring of the Bear Creek Greenway? Also, just after crossing the Bear Creek Bridge on Valley View Road, an abandoned car can be seen. Will this wreck be removed as work progresses on the fire remediation effort?

— MGK

The Oregon Department of Transportation is putting trees it cut from the Almeda fire zone into that holding area that you’ve seen, according to ODOT spokesman Gary Leaming.

ODOT is using land it bought for a future bridge project for the temporary holding area, he said.

The hardwood trees have been offered to the Jackson County Fuel Committee, Leaming said.

The Jackson County Fuel Committee is a group of volunteers who provide firewood for low-income people, along with other help to stay warm. Its office was destroyed by the Almeda fire, but it has temporary quarters across the street in the First Presbyterian Church in Phoenix, according to the group’s website.

Leaming said soft wood from cut trees such as poplars will be chipped and used for erosion control along the Bear Creek Greenway.

As for the burned car you saw, Leaming said it’s been there for about 20 years and was exposed when the Almeda fire raced through the area and burned vegetation.

“The fire uncovered a lot of things around the Greenway,” he said.

It’s not clear yet what will happen to the burned car, Leaming said.

Send questions to “Since You Asked,” Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501; or by email to youasked@rosebudmedia.com. We’re sorry, but the volume of questions received prevents us from answering all of them.