Tree Canopy Action Plan

As Charlotte grows and develops, adaptive policies and actions are needed to sustain thecity’s tree canopy.

In 2020, the City of Charlotte will embark on its new Tree Canopy Action Plan. The action plan is a supplement of the Charlotte Future 2040 Comprehensive Plan, and will better define policies that preserve, restore and enhance the canopy. It will continue the work ofpast tree-related initiatives, including the 2017 Urban Forest Master Plan (UFMP), and guide the upcoming Unified Development Ordinance (UDO).

​The action plan includes:

  • Data analysis of Charlotte’s natural environment and tree canopy to identify opportunities and threats.

  • Conversations with community partners and residents to build consensus and inform a shared tree canopy strategy.

  • Policy creation and guidance to update the city’s Tree Ordinance.

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Related Initiatives

UFMP

Urban Forest Master Plan (UFMP)

Adopted: Fall 2016

A partnership between the City of Charlotte, Trees Charlotte and the community, the UrbanForest Master Plan laid out key principles and goals for preserving Charlotte’s tree canopy. As oneof its action steps, the plan recommended additional study of the impacts from development in order to assess the effectiveness of the city’s tree policies and the Tree Ordinance. The Tree Canopy Action Plan will explore answers to questions posed in this action step.

Charlotte Future

Charlotte Future 2040 Comprehensive Plan

Anticipated Adoption: Spring 2021

As the city’s guide for future land use and growth, the Charlotte Future 2040 Comprehensive Plan has called for a robust community conversation on tree canopy policies. The Tree Canopy Action Plan and UFMP are complementary to the broader growth policies in the 2040 Comprehensive Plan.

tree ordinance

Tree Ordinance Text Amendment for Urban Sites

Fall 2019

Ahead of the UDO effort, the city updated its Tree Ordinance to promote better integration of trees into urban sites and provide flexibility for where trees are planted, while preserving the number of code-required trees on urban sites. The dialogue surrounding this update confirmed the need for an analysis of Charlotte’s tree canopy, and a community-vetted policy on trees.


UNified development

Unified Development Ordinance

Anticipated Adoption: Fall 2021

The UDO is a regulatory tool that will consolidate eight different development ordinances, including the Tree Ordinance, and guide development under policies set by 2040 Plan. The Tree Canopy Action Plan will inform additional amendments to the Tree Ordinance as a part of the UDO effort. The first full UDO draft will be available for public review in spring 2021.


Frequently Asked Questions

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Get Involved

Public input is a key component of this study and the city’s overall tree canopy efforts. Sign up to receive email updates about the Tree Canopy Action Plan and community meeting details. All are welcome to participate; you do not have to be an expert in trees.