Tree Management Practices, Policies and Procedures
the available public right-of-way to allow as great an area for tree
growth as possible. Design the right-of-way around the space needs of
The optimum minimum width between the sidewalk and the curb is 6 feet. To
meet this space target, the following adjustments may be implemented:
- The sidewalk may be narrowed to 4 feet.
- The sidewalk may be curved to the back edge of the right-of-way.
- Redwood City may receive an easement to locate the public sidewalk
on private property.
- The sidewalk may be located next to the curb and the tree planted on
the house-side of the sidewalk.
trees in every vacant tree-planting site to have a fully stocked urban
The strategy is to plant more trees than are removed until all the sites
are filled, and then plant as many trees each year as are removed.
- Plant larger scale
With a goal of providing a significant canopy over the street, only large
shade trees will be chosen. Staff is designating one tree for each block
of a street. In cases where space constraints or obstacles exist, a second
smaller variety of tree may also be designated for that part of the street.
Redwood City’s tree-planting programs offer designated street trees
in 15-gallon containers. These trees are planted in the public right-of-way
at no cost to the property owner. Property owners may upgrade to a larger
tree in a 24-inch box, by paying the difference in price.
which tree will be designated for a particular block when scheduling
the planting of new trees.
Currently, there are a limited number of desirable street tree species available
and new varieties are continually being developed. When residents or businesses
request street trees, staff will determine the designated tree for that block
from the available tree species at that time. This policy provides the maximum
flexibility to choose the best tree species and provide the maximum diversity
of Redwood City’s tree population.
for uniformity of species along a street.
Trees will be selected, when possible, to match the existing character
and shape of the most common existing tree on the street. In some areas,
there is not a dominant existing tree and staff will select the best tree
for the site conditions.
diversity in the overall street tree inventory.
A diverse urban forest population is desirable to minimize the catastrophic
affects of tree diseases. Since tree diseases often affect one tree species
but not others, maintaining diversity diminishes the potential of wider spread
damage. The target range for the population of any one species is between
5% and 15% of the total tree population.
The goals of uniformity and diversity may seem contradictory. Redwood City
balances these objectives by maintaining uniformity on individual streets
and keeping a diverse number of designated street trees.
maintain trees to current industry standards
City trees are maintained using two industry standards:
- American National Standards Institute (ANSI) A-300 Pruning Standard
- International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) Best Management Practices
for Tree Pruning.
These standards are also the foundation for Redwood City ‘s permit
conditions and requirements for privately owned trees.
- Tree removal is the last
Trees take a long time to develop. They are not easily replaced in terms
of size or canopy spread. Therefore, trees are not removed unless they are
found to be dead, dying, structurally unsound, or if some reasonable work
is being performed that will cause the trees to die or become structurally
unsound. Usually mitigating measures can be applied to avoid the removal
of healthy trees.
the Tree Preservation Ordinance governing trees on private property.
The Tree Preservation Ordinance requires a permit for the pruning or removal
of any tree within the size limit protected by the ordinance. Each tree is
inspected to verify the request of the permit applicant.
The ordinance also requires the protection of trees during construction and
development. Public Works is working with Community Development
Services to implement procedures for ensuring that trees on private property
are protected during construction, remodeling, and/or development.