National Grid will be at the YWCA building on 14 Clayton Ave. in Cortland on Tuesday, March 30, to remove the Linden tree in front of the facility. You can read more about the need to replace this tree in the letter below.

We are asking everyone to refrain from parking in the street in front of the YWCA on this day. Please enter the building through the back doors and visit the front desk to complete the check-in process.

Thank you in advance for your patience and understanding!



Dear YWCA Cortland Members and Supporters,

It is with a heavy heart that we inform you that the time has come to remove the majestic Linden tree in the YWCA’s front yard. As a new member of the facilities working group, I volunteered to investigate the landscaping issues because I felt my background as a retired botanist would be useful.

What we have found is that after years of growth and trimming, the majority of the weight of the tree is now on the building’s side of the tree and threatening the structure and safety of those inside. The tree has been protected from wind and storms by its location, surrounded by buildings. Now, however, there are several signs that the tree is in decline. The top of the tree lost its leaves early, indicating that water and nourishment is not reaching the limbs that are above the buildings and in the wind. There is evidence that insects have infested the tree, carpenter ants are feeding on the decayed wood inside the tree. The tree sounds hollow at the base and the type of tree indicates that the decay can continue unchecked into other parts of the tree. For these reasons we now know it is time to take down the tree. Just like we miss the beloved antique show that drew crowds of buyers from all over, who ate lunch under the Linden tree’s shade, we will miss the shade of this mighty tree. Now is the right time to change the YWCA’s landscape and protect our building from harm.

We have a unique opportunity to have the tree removed free of charge. National Grid will remove the tree the next time they are in the area at no cost to the YWCA. We are in the process of choosing a replacement tree, something strong to shade the building for another 100 years! Commemorative pieces of the tree will be available for purchase to support YWCA Cortland’s mission. Stay tuned for announcements on this fundraising effort. Change is the one constant we can count on, the YWCA adapts to new landscapes of all kinds, all of the time. Please support us as we manage one more changing landscape.


Sue Sherman-Broyles
YWCA Cortland Trustee and Facilities Work Group Member