Tree Ordinance Rewrite Update

New Consultant Joins Rewrite Team

A new consulting team, Urban Canopy Works, LLC, has been engaged by City Planning to assist Biohabitats, the Urban Ecology Framework consultant, in Atlanta's tree ordinance rewrite. The company consists of two women, Rachel Comte and Jenny Gulick, who, prior to forming Urban Canopy Works, created urban forest master plans and consulted on urban forestry projects with Davey Resource Group, Inc. 

Timetable for Rewrite - What's Next?

City Planning will be hosting a series of public engagement meetings in November to review the first draft of the tree ordinance; the times, dates and locations to be announced.  They will post the next round of materials on their website for review prior to the public meetings.  Click the chart below to see the expanded view of the crrent timetable for the tree ordinance rewrite.

august schedule update

Is City Planning Listening to the People?

City Planning recently updated their website with a summary of the feedback they received from the community on the Tree Ordinance Rewrite Draft Outline they presented in June. While their summary captures some of the feedback that residents and tree advocates have given, it fails to reflect the degree of opposition that was expressed towards two concepts they proposed in June:

  1. Eliminating the posting and appeals process, and
  2. Allowing one non-high value tree to be cut on a property each year for non-construction purposes.

Feedback to both of these concepts were overwhelmingly negative to the point of being deal breakers, yet, City Planning still had both concepts in the presentation they gave to City Council on August 22.

The City also floated a new concept -- the "Tree Bank" -- at the August 22 work session that was not part of the June TPO Rewrite Draft Outline, thus no broad-based community input on this proposal exists. A concern we have with a credit-based Tree Bank is that trees already are not being planted with the money collected from recompense fees assessed on removed trees. If the Tree Trust Fund is not succeeding in replanting trees to achieve no net loss of trees and we can't account for all the dollars being spent from that fund, why would a Tree Bank be any more effective or transparent?

A comparison of what the City and The Tree Next Door heard can be found here.  A detailed look at what City Planning and The Tree Next Door saw posted to the different concept boards presented at the June meetings can be found here.

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