9.3 Urban Forest

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What was measured?

The number of trees in Glendale; urban forest preservation.

What was found?

As of April 2009, the total number of Glendale street trees is 48,760 with a variety of 246 species. This has increased since the year 2000, at which time there were a total of 37,460 trees. Since then, a street tree inventory was conducted and internal systems were developed, which are now being utilized by City staff for information, planning, operations, and emergency response needs. A “Designated Street Tree List” was also created, providing a framework for specified tree species to be planted along City streets. This “living document” currently takes into consideration the geographic and ecological aspects of the community.

Glendale’s Urban Forestry staff are educated and certified by the International Society of Arboriculture, a highly respected international professional affiliation that assures its members continue their education and retain access to the most recent research and developments concerning all aspects of arboriculture and Urban Forestry. The City’s Urban Forestry program seeks to establish a healthy and thriving urban ecosystem.

The community prompted a revision of the City’s twenty-five year old “Indigenous Tree Ordinance”, which was updated in 2007. While still under modification at this time, the ordinance has recognized the preservation and protection of six native tree species: sycamore, bay-laurel and four oak species. Indigenous trees with a trunk diameter of six inches or greater meet the minimum size qualifying for protection under the Glendale Municipal Code and cannot be cut down, removed, or pruned indiscriminately without the City's review and issuance of a permit. This process provides City residents with a resource to receive arboricultural recommendations on how to sustain the health and appropriate surroundings for these native trees. More information about indigenous trees and the City of Glendale’s process can be found at www.glendaletrees.org.

Glendale’s urban forest includes both public and private trees that define the character of Glendale. The role of an urban forest is to improve environmental quality, increase the economical, physical and social health of communities and foster City pride. Urban and community forests have been recognized as a cost effective means to address a variety of important community and national issues from air quality improvement to combating global warming.

Glendale’s Indigenous Tree Ordinance and protection of indigenous trees increases the natural diversity of the land using its original trees. The presence of these trees supports an essential inter-dependant process that builds and sustains a healthy natural ecosystem. Fundamentally, this system has been providing an environmental balance on its own, prior to urban development.

Data Sources

City of Glendale - Community Services & Parks