Torres Eats Spinach Over Popeyes Restaurant Tree Removal

Torres trees
Rick Torres protests tree cutting. CT Post photo Autumn Driscoll.

From Frank Juliano, CT Post:

A group of literal tree huggers attempted to spare the leafy canopy shading Fairfield Avenue, eventually drawing three mayoral candidates, seven police officers, two carloads of city officials and the developer of a Popeye’s restaurant to the scene.

Enrique Torres, a city councilman representing the Black Rock neighborhood and the Republican candidate for mayor threatened to chain himself to one of the trees, while other neighbors vowed to block the chain saws with their bodies.

Rahman Hashimi attempted to soothe the residents, promising to replace the seven trees coming down with nine, in a landscaped area on the restaurant property, but ended up negotiating with Torres and two other mayoral candidates, Democrats Joe Ganim and Mary-Jane Foster.

Full story here.



  1. So Enrique called Mary-Jane and Joe Ganim. They jumped in their cars immediately. A great photo opportunity for sure. For Ganim, it is a breath of fresh air as he usually shows up at a crime scene thanks to his in-house connections to the police department. I would have been impressed if Mr. Torres chained himself to the tree. That would have made for great drama. This is Popeye’s second location in Bridgeport. All kidding aside, I love old trees and if it could be saved I say–yes. Good job!

    1. “… I would have been impressed if Mr. Torres chained himself to the tree. That would have made for great drama …”

      Oh, I’m sure a man chained to a tree impresses you. Didn’t get the “drama,” but it was a great visual, eh?

      1. Come on Joel, are you really becoming that limited in your comebacks? You disappoint me. Now get busy working on Joe’s campaign. He is losing steam.

    1. Steve,
      As I must remind you from time to time, a Mayor has to deal with financial issues all the time. While the attention was on the cutting of the green (trees) on Fairfield Avenue, I was reviewing the June 2015 monthly financial report. It happens to be the final month of the Fiscal Year 2015 so it has some relevance to taxpayers. Yet the Mayor has called no attention to it. It seems to show a surplus, but a reader cannot tell how the nearly $500,000 surplus claimed in this DRAFT report is accurate because when the balance reported spent is subtracted from the actual revenue report it looks like there may be a $16 Million SURPLUS? Would that be news, of the good news type? Or would it be another example of shoddy financial reporting meant to keep the public confused and without trust? How to verify? Isn’t there a Budget and Appropriations Committee meeting at 6:00 PM on Monday evening? Time will tell.

  2. Apparently, Popeye’s had all the necessary approvals including from the state since these trees line a state road. So it appears these folks protesting were barking up the wrong tree. Oh well.

    1. Interesting that Torres who always claims to be for property rights is against them. Could it have something to do with the property owner’s name?

    1. Derek Brown,
      Your incessant ass-kissing of a candidate you insist you are not supporting is tiresome. Would you care to share who you do believe will be the next Mayor? Could you please discuss the outstanding characteristics of Foster, Daniels, Torres, Gardner, Coviello? We all know you dislike our Mayor. You write volumes on Ganim, who is the candidate of Bridgeport Kid? Come on, Derek Brown. Share the vision of your candidate.

  3. By the end of the day, the trees were cut down. The developer did a nice job landscaping the North Avenue restaurant that has been open for business for months.

    One thing for sure. Ganim, Ganim, Ganim, Foster and Torres proved to be ineffective. What a waste of their energy. The trees are gone. A developer who has invested $2 million in Bridgeport most likely will contribute to Finch.

    Ganim, threatening the developer with legal action after he has gone through all the legal hoops. This is not a Mayoral characteristic. I would have asked Ganim if he were willing to pay the contractor for his time and contract. Each tree had to cost a few grand.

    Nice try, guys! I commend your efforts, but honestly.

  4. Steve, I’m a tree-hugger. Rick’s comment on Channel 12 News is correct, the fried chicken franchisee did not want the trees blocking the signage of his business. Hopefully, those who have confidence in the owner of the building complying with the zoning and site plans will share the specifics of what he agreed to do. Should everyone have paid closer attention to what was permitted? That’s why there are city officials and boards and commissions. Did they not warn the community what would be happening? Apparently not.


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