I just heard about another proposed change at the DPD that may interest the neighborhood. Anyone already following this one? Looks like the ordinance comment period ends tomorrow but it's a great time to email Mayor McGinn and the City Council. I'd like to see an increase in our citywide tree cover, not a decrease.
- Forwarded Message -
From: "Linda Ellis" <gro.spnw|silleadnil#gro.spnw|silleadnil>
Sent: Thursday, October 28, 2010 4:25:13 PM
Subject: Seattle's Proposed Tree Ordinance
Hi CPS Members,
As you may know, Seattle Department of Planning and Development has proposed a new tree ordinance. The text of the proposed Ordinance appears at http://www.seattle.gov/dpd/cms/groups/pan/@pan/@plan/@treeregulation/documents/web_informational/dpdp019340.pdf and the last day for sending comments is October 31, 2010. The new regulations provide little protection for existing trees.
The CPS Chapter Board has written a letter to Seattle Mayor McGinn also recommending against the proposed Ordinance.
If you wish to comment on the proposed tree Ordinance, we encourage you to do so. We are attaching below our letter to the Mayor for your information. Your comments should be sent to:
Seattle Mayor McGinn ( vog.elttaes|nnigcm.ekim#vog.elttaes|nnigcm.ekim )
Seattle City Councilmember Richard Conlin ( vog.elttaes|nilnoc.drahcir#vog.elttaes|nilnoc.drahcir )
Seattle City Councilmember Nick Licata ( vog.elttaes|atacil.kcin#vog.elttaes|atacil.kcin )
Seattle City Councilmember Sally Clark ( vog.elttaes|kralc.yllas#vog.elttaes|kralc.yllas )
Seattle City Councilmember Sally Bagshaw ( vog.elttaes|wahsgab.yllas#vog.elttaes|wahsgab.yllas)
Seattle City Councilmember Mike O'Brien ( vog.elttaes|neirbo.ekim#vog.elttaes|neirbo.ekim )
Seattle City Councilmember Jean Godden ( vog.elttaes|neddog.naej#vog.elttaes|neddog.naej)
Seattle City Councilmember Tim Burgess ( vog.elttaes|ssegrub.mit#vog.elttaes|ssegrub.mit)
Seattle City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen ( vog.elttaeS|nessumsaR.moT#vog.elttaeS|nessumsaR.moT )
Seattle City Councilmember Bruce Harrell ( vog.elttaes|llerrah.ecurb#vog.elttaes|llerrah.ecurb )
Seattle Dept. of Planning and Development Brennon Staley ( vog.elttaes|yelats.nonnerb#vog.elttaes|yelats.nonnerb )
Office and Program Assistant
Washington Native Plant Society
6310 NE 74th St., Ste. 215E
Seattle , WA 98115
Dear Mayor McGinn,
The Central Puget Sound Chapter of the Washington Native Plant Society has serious concerns about the July 14 draft of the proposed new City of Seattle Tree Ordinance. It does not appear to be designed to protect existing native trees nor to encourage the planting of more native trees.
The proposal removes the few existing protections of established trees. The concept of exceptional trees has disappeared. That concept provided protection for large trees of some species. It did show that the city valued large old specimen trees. The interim Tree Ordinance allowed no more than three unexceptional trees to be cut down per year without a permit. The DPD is proposing to rescind this minimal constraint and allow unlimited cutting on private property. This will not help us to increase the canopy cover from 20% to 30% by 2037.
The DPD proposal removes all control from already built single family house lots. This represents something like half the area of the city. There are good ideas about “Green Factor” and “Tree Credits,” but it does not get away from the problem that requiring planting along streets and around high density housing does not allow for trees large enough to significantly increase canopy and to reduce floods and erosion caused by rain runoff.
To restore the canopy, to sequester more carbon dioxide, and to reduce runoff, the tree ordinance needs to provide incentives for private property owners to plant and maintain trees. WNPS is particularly interested in native trees playing their traditional role in the canopy -especially our native conifers. They grow large and keep their foliage in winter and are much better than leafless trees at intercepting rainwater during our region’s wettest season.
The Urban Forestry Commission voted unanimously against the DPD proposal for the new tree ordinance. They are currently working on an alternative proposal. The Urban Forestry Commission was set up last year to advise the Mayor and Council on matters pertaining to trees in the city. I hope you will take their advice into account.
Chair, Central Puget Sound Chapter, Washington Native Plant Society