City of Chicago Announces Plan to Plant Nearly 4,500 New Trees this Year in Neighborhoods Across Chicago

April 26, 2019

The City Celebrates Arbor Day with Tree Planting at Sutherland Elementary School

Marjani Williams

CHICAGO – The City of Chicago announced today that it will plant nearly 4,500 trees this year in neighborhoods across the City.

“Tree planting helps keep the City vibrant and beautiful for all residents,” said DSS Commissioner John Tully. “Every year the City prioritizes investments in tree planting to protect the urban landscape and keep Chicago a ‘City in a Garden’.”

In celebration of Arbor Day today, the Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitation (DSS) held a tree planting ceremony with students at Sutherland Elementary and planted six trees around the school’s perimeter.  The trees planted today will help to maintain the Beverly neighborhood's urban canopy.

Under the leadership of Mayor Emanuel, the City has planted more than 42,000 trees in communities across Chicago since 2011. In 2019, the City will plant an additional 4,500 new trees in neighborhoods across Chicago. The Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) will plant approximately 450 of these new trees this year through the GreenStreets program and following infrastructure improvement projects.

“CDOT is proud to work with the Department of Streets and Sanitation’s Forestry Bureau to help beautify Chicago and make it a greener, healthier and more sustainable City,” said CDOT Commissioner Rebekah Scheinfeld. “Planting new trees is always a priority for us when we are re-building major roads, implementing streetscape projects and working with Aldermen on neighborhood improvements.”

In addition to tree planting, DSS’s Bureau of Forestry also maintains more than 500,000 parkway trees a year, addressing insect and disease problems and tree trimming and removals. Annually, the Department  invests more than $2 million to plant trees in neighborhoods across the City that have seen a significant amount of tree removals, utilizing a diverse set of tree species to enhance and protect the urban canopy.

As a result of these efforts, Chicago was recognized for the 37th year in a row, as a "Tree City USA" by the Arbor Day Foundation for continuing to meet core standards of sound urban forestry management.  Chicago has an estimated 157 million trees on both public and private property, which cover 15.5 percent of the area, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.  Chicago's urban forest removes approximately 677,000 tons of carbon per year and about 18,080 tons of air pollution annually.

Residents who have had a parkway tree removed recently and would like to request a new tree to be planted on the parkway should call 311 for assistance.


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