The Urban Tree Conservation By-law applies to private land within the urban area of the City of Ottawa plus specific adjacent rural areas recommended by staff for inclusion within the urban boundary, including a small area in the east end along the Ottawa River, between the urban boundary and Ted Kelly Lane. These areas are shown on Schedules C through H of the by-law.
The By-law currently doesn't apply to any other property in the rural area, nor does it apply to normal farming practices, orchards, tree farms, golf courses, or cemeteries anywhere in the city.
There are two main sections in the By-law:
- Large Property Component -- For properties greater than one hectare in size, except condominium and multi-residential properties, landowners must have a City-approved Tree Conservation Report before trees over 10 centimetres in diameter can be cut down.
- Small Property Component -- For properties one hectare or less in size, and condominium and multi-residential properties of all sizes, if a landowner wants to remove a tree that is 50 centimetres (20 inches) or greater in diameter, they must obtain a Distinctive Tree Permit from the City.
Learn more about the City’s tree conservation report guidelines and urban tree conservation.
For more information: firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 3-1-1 (TTY: 613-580-2401).
Measuring your tree
Find out how to measure the diameter of a tree.
Tree permit costs
For properties greater than one hectare, if the tree removal is a part of a development application, the tree permit fee is included in the development application fee. For properties one hectare or less, the application fee is $100.
Find out what you need to do in order to remove a distinctive tree.
Offences under the by-law
Under the by-law, an offence may include destruction of a tree or injuring a tree without a permit, failing to protect a tree that is identified for protection in the permit conditions, or failing to comply with a stop work order.
If convicted of an offence, the penalties range from a minimum fine of $500 to a maximum fine of $100,000. For failing to adhere to a stop work order, the minimum fine is $500 and the maximum fine is $100,000 for each day or part of a day that the offence continues; in this case the total of all daily fines is not limited to $100,000.
City of Ottawa Infill Tree Conservation Program
Tree conservation is considered an essential element in the growth and development of the City of Ottawa. Trees improve air quality, reduce heating and cooling costs, minimize our carbon footprint, and increase property value. The Infill Tree Conservation Program has been developed to maintain and enhance these benefits within the city.
These infill guidelines apply to all new single, semi-detached, duplex and triplex units built inside the greenbelt that are not subject to Site Plan or Subdivision applications.
Please visit the City of Ottawa Infill Tree Conservation Program for more information.