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Our Roots Chicago Logo Chicago continues to work toward creating resilient and sustainable communities across the city. Joining 96 cities around the world, the City of Chicago has updated its Climate Action Plan to reflect the bold action needed to protect and strengthen communities- locally and globally.

With historic investments coming in 2022, Chicago is ready to strengthen partnerships and programs across the city to expand access to green space, reduce carbon emissions, and connect residents to meaningful resources and services. 

One of the ways we are carrying out our Climate Action Plan here in Chicago is through Our Roots Chicago project. Our goal is to expand the tree canopy in Chicago through an equitable approach to every neighborhood in Chicago leaving no neighborhood behind.

Our goal is to plant 75,000 new trees in the city of Chicago, and we want you to be a part of it so we can create a sustainable tomorrow by making an impact today.

Want to get involved? Call 311 or download the CHI311 app to request that the Department of Streets and Sanitation Bureau of Forestry plant a parkway tree.

Benefits of Trees
  • Planting trees improve air quality, provide shade and cool air, reduce pollution

  • More trees mean healthier communities

  • Healthier communities mean healthier lives

  • Trees promote physical activity, and you’re more likely to walk more in neighborhoods and parks with more trees

  • Trees improve physical and mental health

  • Trees bring communities together and improves social cohesion

  • Trees reduce stress and anxiety

  • Trees reduce your energy bills by providing your home shade from the sun and blocking winter winds

  • Trees increasing property values

  • Trees increase walking traffic and shopping in business districts

  • Trees absorb carbon and help to lessen climate change effects

  • Trees reduce air and surface temperature reducing urban heat islands while increasing cooling effects

  • Trees decrease soil erosion and reduce dirt to sweep from curbs and sidewalk

  • Trees help repair local biodiversity by providing critical bird, small animal, and essential insect habitats while helping decrease pests.

  • Trees soak up large amounts of water and help to manage storm water runoff and prevent floods

Tree Canopy Coverage Percentage by Census Tract

Tree Canopy Map

By adding layers of public health, environmental, social, and economic data, we can better understand tree canopies in vulnerable neighborhoods throughout the city and to reduce the impacts of climate change on these communities.

What I’ve heard about Trees

I've heard that...

Tree roots do not break pipes; rather, broken pipes attract tree roots due to moisture in the pipes.

Did you know that tree roots only go down 2-3 feet?

There are no scientific studies that prove this. Studies actually show that tree lined streets have lower crime rates

Taking care of trees takes less time and money than taking care of grass because you don’t need a lawnmower that requires maintenance, gas, oil, and or electricity.

The City will trim your parkway tree at no cost to you.

Did you know you can rake leaves to the base of the tree in the fall and leave them there as mulch for the winter and spring months?

Trees provide oxygen, improve air quality, help keep soil in place, and absorb water which prevents flooding.

Trees also absorb carbon and attract a lot of wildlife such as birds that feed on insects like mosquitos.

Trees that are not properly maintained may have weaker limbs.

Trees can protect your home from flooding.

They can also lower your air conditioning costs by providing shade and lowering air temperature. Trees can block cold winds in the winter lowering your heating costs.

How To Get Involved

Call 311 or download the CHI311 app to request the Department of Streets and Sanitation Bureau of Forestry to plant a parkway tree.

Google Play
Apple app store

Community Tree Equity Working Group

Want to get involved? If interested, please contact ourroots@cityofchicago.org

Why Tree Planting is Necessary for a Healthy Economy and Environment