I have lived in the Southport area for 33 years. It doesn't take much to "upset" the downtown merchants. I don't really see any problem with benches next to stores or a small merchandise display. Dining on the sidewalk is different. Can't go for that. The trees that I suppose belong to the city are more of a nuisance than the rest of the stuff mentioned. If the benches and other items go, the trees should as well.
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