National, state, and local tree news

Durham To Inventory And Assess Urban Trees

By Conni Kunzler | November 7, 2016

Durham, NC (October 25, 2016) – Durham, NC takes its trees seriously. To address both the pending death of many of the street trees and the inequity of trees in the city, the city’s general services department had allocated $45,000 in its fiscal year budget to do a willow and water oak street tree inventory and a city-wide tree canopy assessment of both public and private trees.

durham-street-inventoryThe inventory, however, will focus on only a portion of Durham. It will assess the condition of the trees—especially those that will need to be removed in the next two to five years.

Those two tools combined will show what trees will be lost in the future and it’ll also help the city project when trees will die and need replacing, director of general services Steven Hicks told the council.

The inventory will focus in an area bounded by West Murray Avenue to the north, Junction Road to the east, Guess Road to the west and University Drive to the south. The focus will be on water and willow oaks in the city right-of-way—but those are just parameters. Club Boulevard, which has a large population of the oaks, has already been inventoried end-to-end, Kevin Lilley of the urban forestry division told the council.

It’ll also help spread the tree love to those areas of the city that are lacking in tree canopy. “We know, in certain pockets of the community, we need to do a better job of planting trees,” Hicks said.

Once the inventory and assessment are done, the city will be able to add the information to its mapping software and have overlays to show tree canopy density. That canopy assessment, Hicks said, will help the city see where it needs to focus its tree replanting efforts.

Read the full articles: “To Keep Track of Trees, Durham Branches Out to Develop Inventory, Assessment,” Indy Week; “Durham to inventory trees, canopies across city,” The News & Observer

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