April 11, 2012

City of Chicago Begins Competitive Bidding Process for Tree Trimming

City seeks qualified forestry businesses to service up to 20,000 parkway trees annually

Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

Following Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s announcement to implement a competitive bidding process for the City’s tree trimming services, the City of Chicago today released a solicitation document seeking qualified forestry companies to bid on forestry work to care for and maintain the city’s parkway trees.  

The solicitation document seeks qualified forestry businesses who will ultimately bid through a reverse auction on City forestry work that will include tree trims and tree emergencies.  Qualified businesses will bid on a five-year contract for up to five service areas, each with 4,000 trees for a total of 20,000 trees annually.  

“By implementing this process in tree trimming, we are building an environment of greater transparency and ensuring we are getting the best services at the best price for the taxpayer,” said Mayor Emanuel.

Last week, after announcing the City spent $2.2 million less in recycling services over six-months as a result of managed competition, Mayor Emanuel stated he would expand similar strategies to tree trimming and street marking.

Reverse auction allows open and competitive bidding online, where vendors have more than one chance to bid on the contract. In this approach, vendors can compete against each other in a dynamic, real-time setting to drive prices downward and save taxpayer dollars.

“Managed competition has not only saved taxpayer resources, but has driven DSS employees to strive to become more efficient in their work,” said Commissioner Thomas G. Byrne, Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitation.  “By expanding this strategy to tree trimming, we can determine the fair market value of forestry services and make certain we are providing the most efficient and best quality services.”

Businesses interested in being considered as a forestry service provider, must submit their qualifications without pricing as outlined in the solicitation document by Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 11 a.m. CST.  Qualified businesses who meet the City’s procurement criteria will participate in the reverse auction on May 22, 2012.

In 2011, the Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitation trimmed more than 24,000 trees, removed nearly 12,000 trees and serviced nearly 19,000 tree emergencies.