LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKTY) -- An oak tree, three centuries old, is causing an uproar in one part of Lexington.
Preservationists are concerned the integrity of it's root system could be compromised if developers have their way and give it 50-feet of space.
"People have a need for trees. you see that on the weekend in the park."
Trees are a passion of Dave Leonard who's one of a handful of activists leading the charge to save a 300 year old tree off Harrodsburg and Military Pike.
At issue, is not necessarily the tree itself. No one is talking about chopping it down. Preservations say the root of the problem goes much deeper.
In order to keep the tree around leonard says, its root system needs 100-feet of space around the base.
"The mass of the root system should equal the mass of the crown, taking away the trunk. So, to support one another because the leaves support the roots, the roots support the tree and the trunk is there," said Leonard.
Ball Homes, wants to build apartments and single-family homes nearby and says it wants to protect and preserve the tree by giving it 50-feet of space "around its base.
The company also says, it hired an arborist, to advise them.
But, that's not good enough for Leonard and other preservationists.
"The tree will be severely compromised and it will decline over time. we're hoping we can come in with a compromise," said Leonard.