Tree Removal

An application for tree removal (PDF) must be filled out and turned in to the Development Services Office for any tree to be removed. A permit for removal must be obtained for any tree meeting the following conditions:
  • Tree removal associated with pre-development or construction activity:
    Any tree located on the subject site with a circumference of at least 19 inches (6 inch-diameter). See also Tree Disposition Requirements.
  • Tree removals other than listed above:
    Any tree anywhere in the city with a circumference of 36 inches (12-inch diameter) or more
    Any tree located in a front yard (setback), a side street yard (setback) of corner sites, and a right-of-way area with a circumference of 19 inches (6-inch diameter) or more.
Tree Tops
Application
To remove any tree you must first fill out a tree removal application (PDF). Staff can also fax you a form, or you may fill one out at the Public Works Building, located at 3826 Amherst, in the Development Services Office. City staff will then inspect the tree and will contact you with the results. If a permit is required for removal, then the tree removal contractor must come in to the Development Services Office to obtain the permit. They must be registered as a contractor with the city and have proof of liability insurance.

Pre-Development or Construction Activity
If the removal is in conjunction with pre-development or construction activity (i.e. demolition, remodel & addition, new construction or pools) then a Tree Disposition must be submitted with your plans. A Tree Disposition is similar to an impact statement. It must include tree surveys depicting all trees with a 19-inch circumference (6-inch diameter) or larger, proposed construction site plans and a narrative detailing all tree protection, conditions, and treatments.

Regulations
City regulations require that all trees to be removed be evaluated to determine replacement inches. The evaluation determines the amount of inches that must be replaced. These inches must be qualified trees at least 2 inches in diameter measured 6 inches above the ground. For every 10 inches of replacement inches required, the applicant must plant at least 1 4-inch diameter tree, or a 100-gallon tree of species class 1 or 2. More than 1 tree may be necessary depending on the amount of replacement inches. An option is available to donate money to the West University Tree Trust (PDF) if all replacement inches cannot be planted on the site. If a tree is considered dead, diseased, dying or hazardous, then no replacement is required. Supporting documentation may be required in certain circumstances.