A City Among the Trees
In 1996 the City of Seattle's Urban Forest Coalition received a grant for $72,075 from the National Urban Forestry Advisory Council to create three products that illustrate the interconnections between urban forestry and the social, environmental and economic benefits trees bring to communities. A City Among the Trees integrates elements of urban forestry, comprehensive planning, and sustainability. It is a valuable resource for citizens planning for trees and green spaces and will foster awareness and political support for future urban forestry management.
A twenty-minute video highlights specific examples of sustainable urban forestry techniques from creating "green streets" to restoring greenbelts and cultivating community gardens. The video begins with a lively animated sequence showing the growth of a tree, the changing seasons, and the generations of a family who care for the tree through its seasonal changes. Faye Kidder, a gardener with the Seattle Department of Parks and Recreation, serves as a spokesperson for the trees. NOTE: THE VIDEO IS CURRENTLY OUT OF PRINT.
A companion workbook provides urban forestry guidelines, including permitting requirements, planting specifications, and recommended management practices. The Educator's Guide provides a context and curricular exercises for involving middle and high school students in urban planning and forest stewardship.
The Urban Forest Coalition is an interdepartmental partnership whose mission is to coordinate the overlapping urban forest functions of city departments and related programs and activities. Coalition members who worked on this project were representatives from SDOT, Seattle Department of Parks and Recreation, Seattle City Light, the Department of Neighborhoods, and the City of Seattle's Strategic Planning Office.
Our community partners were: Arai/Jackson Architects & Planners, Ballard Open Space Committee, Byrd Productions, the University of Washington Center for Urban Horticulture, North Beacon Hill Forestry Committee, Seattle Design Commission, Seattle Rotary Club, the Trust for Public Lands, TREEmendous Seattle, PlantAmnesty, Washington Community Forestry Council, Tree Steward Volunteers, P-Patch Program, Mountains to Sound Greenway, Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce, Seattle School District, Worthy & Associates, and the Washington Forest Protection Association.
A City Among the Trees is a resource for Seattle's citizens, planners, policy makers, and youth to actively plan and manage our urban forest to achieve a sustainable quality of life. While the materials are designed to serve a local audience, they will also serve as a model for other communities' efforts.
Copies of the workbook are available for sale to the general public ($20 includes postage and handling).
Send checks and money orders only, written out to the City of Seattle. Mail them to:
SDOT Urban Forestry
Seattle Department of Transportation
PO Box 34996,
Seattle, WA 98124-4996
The book and video are available to check out from all of the Seattle Libraries and Neighborhood Service Centers. For further information contact SDOT Urban Forestry at 684-8733.