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Trees & Sidewalks Operations Plan

The Trees & Sidewalks Operations Plan is complete. You may download the plan and appendices or request a hard copy of the plan by calling 206-684-TREE.

Street trees and sidewalks both play vital roles in Seattle’s public realm, helping to make our city more livable and sustain our quality of life. It is not uncommon for conflicts to arise between trees and sidewalks, particularly in locations where they were installed some time ago. These conflicts can compromise pedestrian access to the sidewalk and/or tree health.

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT), with the assistance of a consultant team led by SvR Design Company, has developed a Trees & Sidewalks Operations Plan to better address commonly occurring conflicts between trees and sidewalks. The purpose of the plan is to clarify responsibilities and work processes and to provide guidance on installation, repair, and maintenance of sidewalks and street trees in Seattle’s rights-of-way.

This operations plan informs the work of SDOT’s Street Maintenance and Urban Forestry divisions as well as other City departments. The plan also clarifies for the broader public the processes and procedures that SDOT uses to manage street trees and sidewalks in partnership with Seattle residents, businesses, and property owners.

Examples of conflicts between trees and sidewalks in Seattles Madrona neighborhood

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