The process of bringing down the iconic oak trees at Toomer's Corner is underway. Just after 7:20 CDT this morning workmen brought down the first limb. Both trees will be cut down to root level by midday.
Alabama fan Harvey Updyke pleaded guilty to poisoning the oaks following the 2010 Iron Bowl.
Auburn University officials unveiled a new design for the Samford Park area at Toomer's Corner during a Celebrate the Tradition event marking the final rolling of the poisoned Auburn Oaks.
An arcing path design, set to be implemented in 2014 with the planting of two oak trees, was selected after a series of public workshops and an online survey in which more than 10,000 alumni, students, fans and friends provided opinions and ideas.
"We are unveiling the results of your ideas," said Bill Stone, Auburn Alumni Association president, who helped unveil an artist's rendering. "I can tell one thing for certain: Live trees will be planted on the corner and the great tradition of rolling the corner will continue."
Auburn University's Office of Campus Planning and Space Management and the architectural firm of Nelson Byrd Woltz/jB+a Landscape Architects led the efforts in gathering ideas and choosing the design.
Officials said the new design will place trees farther back from the intersection; maintain the existing and historic character of the corner; retain the 1917 gates in their current positions; add more seating and shaded areas; and include the planting of additional trees along a curved walkway through Samford Park.