As people make their way down 27th Ave in Astoria, a neighborhood in Queens, NY, that borders the East River just east of the isle of Manhattan, they may stumble upon a rather large tree. At first there seems to be nothing special about this random tree, but upon closer inspection visitors may notice that the tree grows directly through an auto body repair shop.
Visitors can step into the office of Cove Recovery and Towing to find out for themselves.
The very old tree grows right through the counter and up through roof. Owner Tommy Cali, 59, built the office around the tree when he opened the business 25 years ago, and that it’s continued to grow without problems ever since.
“My wife’s family, they used to own the house here,” Cali told CBS 2, “It was sentimental. She didn’t want it cut down, that’s why it’s still standing.”
It took Cali about eight months to build the office. He did the construction himself with materials he found.
“It wasn’t too hard,” Cali said. “I just got all the scraps together that I found, put them in one spot and one day I just started to build it.”
A live tree growing through a inanimate object requires quite a bit of maintenance to be sure the building does not obstruct the tree’s growth, and the tree does not ruin the building.
“I cut the sheet rock out as it grows wider and on the top we have rubber mounted around it so as it grows the rubber stretches,” Cali said.
Despite the up keep, Cali said he has no intentions of cutting the tree. He’ll just let nature take its course.