Posted by Ashley Carlton on Wed, Jan 13, 2016 @ 10:37 PM
Urban Forest a Priority in Charlotte, NC:
Nestled in Mecklenberg County is the charming city of Charlotte, North Carolina, and nestled between all of the new and historical architecture is a strong, ever growing urban forest.
As boasted on the City of Charlotte’s website, “Charlotte is nationally recognized for its extensive, diverse and healthy tree canopy. For more than 30 years, Charlotte citizens and government agencies have chosen to protect and preserve trees in our community.”
The boasts, though, are backed up by leafy green facts. In 2012, the National Recreation and Park Association awarded the National Gold Medal Award, and the teams that make up The City Arborist and The Urban Forestry oversee the protection, planting, and maintenance of trees. Charlotte is logged at 46% with over 200 species of trees, and an encouraging ration of one tree for every seven residents.
It’s clear that Charlotte holds a certain amount of pride and motivation in maintaining and improving the health of their canopy. One way they bring the city dwellers into an active role is good old fashioned awards.
“The Charlotte Tree Advisory Commission, on behalf of The Mayor and City Council, annually presents Charlotte’s Crown Tree Awards in four different categories. These awards recognize excellence in tree preservation, tree planting, and tree advisory. To be eligible, the site must have been complete for one year.”
Further, Charlotte maintains its position in the top ranks of cities with urban forests. Recently completed in December of 2015, Charlotte has made available to the public First Ward Park. First Ward is a 4 acre park of former nestled, “between the ImaginOn library and UNC Charlotte’s uptown campus, [and] is expected to anchor a major redevelopment of the area, much of which is still surface parking owned by Levine Properties.”
Just as in so many other urban forests, the benefits of a strong urban forest bring huge returns to Charlotte’s infrastructure, and has provided this charmed city , “… with $2.76 million in benefits. In addition, Charlotte’s trees provide more than $900,000 in energy savings annually and $2.1 million in stormwater controls.”
The results in Charlotte are inarguable and compelling models for other city’s urban forestry efforts.
photo coutesy of . fortibus