AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – Amherst could lose one of its most iconic tree, the Merry Maple. The tree has been a part of the holiday traditions in the town for decades but it could soon be cut down.

The Merry Maple tree is lit to start off the holiday season but now if you walk past it in the North Common, you’ll notice a sign saying it could be removed. That’s because they’re planning to redesign the area.

According to the town’s public shade tree committee, the Merry Maple along with two other Norway Maples are not healthy and could face more damage from reconstruction. The town’s tree warden said because the tree gets a lot of foot traffic and it’s getting old, it’s time for it to go. However, some hope it could stay.

Amherst Tree Warden Alan Snow told 22News, “A lot of soil erosion because it’s on a slope so it’s struggling as an old tree.”

“The parking lot right there so if it was to fall on cars, it’s a little bit of a liability but other than that, I don’t see why you’d try to chop it down,” said Austin Felix of Greenfield.

The Amherst Tree Warden did say in that redevelopment of the common, they do plan to plant more trees. A public shade hearing is scheduled for August 9th to discuss the removal of the Merry Maple, which will take place at 5:00 p.m. and will be available on Zoom.