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Protecting Trees

Trees are a valuable City asset. If your project damages a public tree, your project will be charged for the damage.

Depending on the damage, the tree may need to be removed. You will be responsible for both the cost of removal and the asset value of the tree. Some larges elms are worth more than $30,000.

The City of Edmonton protects trees by:

  • Pruning in advance to provide clearance for equipment
  • Recommending better spots to park to prevent damage from exhaust
  • Showing you how to meet your needs while working around large roots instead of cutting them
While You Are Planning
  • In most residential neighbourhoods, the trees that line the streets are owned by the City. To confirm if a tree adjacent to your construction site is City-owned, call 311.
  • If you are working within five metres of a City-owned tree, a fence must be erected around the Tree Protection Zone* to ensure no damage to the tree or it's roots.

TPZ Calculation Table

Trunk Diameter (DBH)

Minimum Protection Distances Required

10 cm & under 1.2 meters
11 - 30 cm 1.8 meters
31 - 40 cm 2.4 meters
41 - 50 cm 3.0 meters
51 - 60 cm 3.6 meters
61 - 70 cm 4.2 meters
71 - 80 cm 4.8 meters
>81 cm 5.0 meters
  • Parking and/or storing materials and equipment within the tree protection zone is not permitted.
  • Where temporary site access across a tree protection zone is required, call 311 to request assistance from an Urban Forester. This is necessary because prevention measures must be taken to keep tree soil from becoming compacted.
  • Adjacent trees may also require pruning to ensure proper clearance for machinery or utility access.
  • Driving or parking on any boulevard is not permitted without boulevard protection that has been approved by the City of Edmonton.

*A tree protection zone is the outermost circumference of a tree canopy where water drips from onto the ground.

Tree Protection Sign

Signage for use in tree protection zones.

Tree Protection Brochure

A tree protection zone is the area of the tree's environment that must be protected. Within this zone, access must be restricted and materials storage or waste dumping is prohibited. 

For More Information


In Edmonton: 311

Outside Edmonton: 780-442-5311

Fax 780-496-4978

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