Not In My Neighbor’s Front Yard: Treehouse Controversy in University Park

The Johnson boys: breaking code, but having fun.
The Johnson boys: breaking code and loving it.

Folks at our sister blog Overheard have been all over this treehouse story for more than a week, and now Good Morning America and the LA Times are getting into the mix. Intrepid community columnist Merritt Patterson reports that Brenk and Amanda Johnson, the parents who constructed a treehouse for their sons in the front yard of their University Park home, have been contacted by the national media outlets about the city’s threat to tear it down. The possibility of two cute kids (ages 8 and 6) losing their treehouse has caused quite a stir, but UP reps say city code restricts treehouses to the back yards of homes in University Park. It is unclear whether or not the city council will consider making an exception or change the code. Mr. Johnson, who says he spent 50+ hours building the treehouse and lost the tip of his thumb in the process, just wants his kids to have a treehouse–and doesn’t have a tree that can support a treehouse in the back yard. He was given 30 days to tear the treehouse down.

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