Trees need to be one of the first things considered in planning a project on your property.
If you are building an addition, installing a new deck or fence, putting in a pool, building a coach house, fixing any of your servicing, or any other construction project on your property, you may require a tree permit in addition to any other permit you need to do the work.
Familiarize yourself with the City’s Tree Protection By-law so that you know when a tree permit is required and how to protect trees that are located close to the work you are planning to do.
Use the Decision Tree tool to determine how to apply for a tree permit, if one is required.
Remember that obtaining any other type of permit from the City does not give you permission to remove trees that are protected under the Tree Protection By-law. This includes, but is not limited to Building Permits, Pool Enclosure Permits, Road Cut Permits, Demolition Permits, etc.
If you do not have to remove a tree to do the work that you are doing, that’s great! You still need to ensure that you are protecting the trees around your project adequately. Please refer to the City’s Tree Protection information to ensure that you are protecting trees while you are doing any construction work, no matter the scale. Injuring a tree that is protected under the Tree Protection By-law is a contravention of the by-law.
Here are some things to consider when planning your project to retain trees:
- Remember that trees on neighbouring properties may have roots that extend into your property.
- Determine the critical root zone (CRZ) of the trees on and adjacent to your property. The critical root zone is established as being 10 centimetres from the trunk of a tree for every centimetre of trunk diameter. The trunk diameter is measured at a height of 1.3 metres for trees of 15 centimetres diameter and greater and at a height of 0.3 metres for trees of less than 15 centimetres diameter.
- Prioritize the protection of the trees when planning the project. Try to design your project around the trees so that no trees need to be removed, and no digging or excavation has to be done within the CRZ of any protected trees.
- Work with an arborist to determine any required mitigation measures to put in place for any work near trees.