Tree Protection - What & Why

What's Happening Now?

In September of 2019, the Mayor and City Council adopted a resolution (Resolution 31902) asking SDCI to explore strategies to strengthen tree protections. The intent of the resolution is to find opportunities to balance tree regulations while accommodating future growth and density as required by the City's Comprehensive Plan.

We are well underway with our work and are conducting the public outreach called for in Resolution 31902. The outreach includes two approaches that are running concurrently:

  1. Targeted culturally appropriate engagement in multiple languages using trusted and established Community Liaisons through a partnership with the Department of Neighborhoods
  2. A series of listening sessions to reach other key stakeholders

Through July 2021, we are conducting a series of six listening sessions with groups that are able to provide technical expertise and lived experience that will inform our recommendations to Council. Results of the listening sessions will be posted here, please sign up for our listserv to stay up-to-date on the latest information.  If you would like to provide additional comments and/or were unable to attend one of the six listening sessions, please email your comments directly to Chanda Emery at

Project Benefits

Updates to tree protections can provide a number of benefits including:

  • Add to and compliment tree protection improvements made by SDCI in the past two years
  • Update rules and business practices for tree protection 
  • Recommendations for any changes needed to the tree protection code 
  • Balance regulations protecting trees with supporting future growth and density as provided in the City's Comprehensive Plan

The End Result

Anticipated results from this project in 2021 include:

  • New business practices to support tree protection
  • Upgrades to technology and record keeping 
  • Draft proposal available for environmental review (SEPA) for updates to Seattle Municipal Code Chapter 25.11 by the end of Q4 2021