Charlotte City Council approved a text amendment to the city's Tree Ordinance on Monday, August 22, 2016. The text amendment consisted of three revisions to the tree ordinance:
- Add a definition which clarifies single family development.
- Limits the application of the single family tree save incentives to single family developments which are subject to the subdivision ordinance.
- Single family developments electing to preserve greater than 25% of the parcel as tree save area are required to establish a 20 foot buffer around the development.
Two of the revisions took effect on August 22, 2016 and the third amendment, the buffer requirement, will take effect on November 22, 2016.
The 2002 Tree Ordinance revision added a requirement for single family developments to preserve a minimum of 10% of the parcel as tree save area; this requirement was incorporated to reduce clear cutting of trees during project development in an attempt to preserve the existing tree canopy. Incentives for preserving greater than the minimum required tree save area were also introduced which allowed for increased density through the reduction of lot sizes and street frontage requirements.