WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. -- Work began Tuesday on a major project that has been stirring up some controversy in the city of Williamsport.
More than 50 trees in the Newberry section will be torn down so that crews can pave the sidewalks and streets.
Some neighbors are sad to see the trees go.
West 4th Street is a main street in the Newberry section of Williamsport. Neighbors say it used to have a canopy of trees that went over the road, but now that's a thing of the past.
PennDOT says crews needed to clear the area for a paving project which would make roads and sidewalks smoother in the Newberry section.
"I was just devastated. I was crying all day just upset because I thought that we had a little more time," said Lisa Williams, Williamsport.
PennDOT says it needed to remove 51 trees because some of the roots were going underneath the pavement.
Once all of the trees are removed, work will begin to repave the streets in this part of Williamsport.
Cara Erb owns West End Family Market and says smoother roads could mean more business.
"I really think that they need to pave the street. It is kind of a mess. People don't like driving on 4th Street because of all the potholes," said Erb.
But people who live nearby say the lack of trees makes the neighborhood feel less like home.
"It becomes a thoroughfare. It becomes strictly a street for traffic," said Margaret Tupper, Williamsport.
PennDOT says it plans to plant 10 new trees once the road work is finished.
"Ten is better than nothing, but I'm going to go for replanting a lot more than that," said Williams.
The road work in this part of Williamsport is expected to be completed by fall of 2020.