Media contact: Yvonne Taunton
University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Education Building to the Alumni House, ensuring its continued growth as the Education Building is razed to make way for the Science and Engineering Complex. Demolition on the building began May 2021.A 48-year-old Japanese maple has been relocated successfully from the
Scott Moran, director of Support Services for UAB Facilities, says the tree was likely planted when the Education Building was erected in 1973 as Building No. 1, one of the first buildings constructed, rather than acquired, for the UAB campus. Facilities classifies the Japanese maple as a legacy tree, a term used at UAB to mean a tree that is 45-plus years old and either existed before the UAB campus or was planted intentionally to create the campus. Other legacy trees include the Mini Park live oaks and other Japanese maples on campus, including ones at the Humanities Building, Blount and Rast halls, and Ryals Public Health Building, among others on campus and at the Woodward House.
“This tree is an important part of UAB’s history, and we’re so glad it’s flourishing in its new home,” Moran said. “In a way, this maple’s story is a great representation of UAB’s evolution and resilience — no matter the obstacles, we pivot and continue to grow.”
UAB has long been committed to ensuring the health of its trees. In April, the campus was designated by the National Arbor Day Foundation for the seventh time as a Tree Campus USA for its work to nurture more than 4,400 healthy trees and engage students and employees in conservation. UAB also was honored for the second time with a Tree Campus Healthcare designation, which recognizes health institutions that make a mission-aligned impact on community wellness through tree education, investment and community engagement.
UAB is dedicated to preserving tree growth on campus, while accommodating campus construction. The UAB Facilities Division created a process to evaluate the trees and estimate the value of their contributions to the campus ecosystem. If a tree or group of trees must be removed during construction, new trees that provide similar contributions must be planted at the site or the equivalent dollar amount added to the Lynne and Tim Sullivan Tree Fund, renamed in 2020 for retired UAB Facilities employee Tim Sullivan and his wife, Lynne. The Tree Fund supports the management of UAB’s urban forest.