Urban Ecology Framework

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 UEF_COVID cancellation

The City of Atlanta launched its first urban ecology study in an effort to evaluate and inventory the City’s natural environs, including rivers and creeks, forest and tree canopy, ridges and watersheds, public and private green spaces, and other features that encompass and define the City’s existing landscape. The Urban Ecology Framework identifies what natural features are unique to the City of Atlanta, how ecosystems or habitats can be restored, and which policies promote development aligned with those features and systems. This inventory will be used to define a better future condition for the natural environment, including high-level recommendations about future green spaces, green connections, and green policies. This work represents the implementation of the Atlanta City Design value Nature, which aims to improve and accentuate Atlanta’s authentic character in a way that can accommodate a much larger population.

The Urban Ecology Framework (UEF) is being led by the Department of City Planning with involvement and cross-collaboration from other City Departments, such as Departments of Watershed Management and Parks and Recreation, as well as Partner organizations like Trees Atlanta and Park Pride The consultant teamis led by Biohabitats, Inc.

The City of Atlanta intends to enact a substantially new Tree Protection Ordinance in 2020. This is the last step in the Urban Ecology study which began in March 2018 and is a second phase of Atlanta City Design. A central premise of Atlanta City Design is that as the city gets denser and more populated, the natural resources of the city should be enhanced commensurately.

The Tree Protection Ordinance in Atlanta was originally enacted in 2001. Getting to a more satisfactory technique for regulating removal, protection and planting of trees requires careful consideration of all perspectives. The Department of City Planning is leading this effort and is anxious to get to a detailed proposal for consideration by City Council.

Below is an updated schedule for this work. This contemplates a final draft for adoption by City Council in July 2020.  

Comments can be sent to the project team at treeordinance@atlantaga.gov. Please note that this is a new email address for comments. Any comments previously submitted to urbanecology@peqatl.com have been received and read. Additionally, feel free to contact Andrew Walter, UEF Project Manager, at awalter@atlantaga.gov or by calling 470-747-1605. 


Program Sheet (revised 8/2019)
Project Team and Committee Members

Project Launch Launch Summary
Vision and Goals Presentation- 5/22/2018
Activity Results
Public Meeting Summary
Stakeholder Meeting Summary
Technical Advisory Meeting Summary
Needs Assessment Presentation - 8/29/2018
Public Meeting Summary
Stakeholder Meeting Summary
Technical Advisory Meeting Summary
Data Analysis & Initial Findings Presentation - 12/14/2018
Meeting Summary
Stakeholder Meeting Summary
Technical Advisory Meeting Summary
Findings & Recommendations Meeting Flyer
Presentation - 4/23/2019 & 4/24/2019
City Design Findings Maps
UEF Recommendations Maps 
Tree Protection Ordinance Outline Meeting Flyer
Presentation and Concept outline of TPO -6/3, 6/4, 6/5, 6/6/2019
Public meeting presentation boards
Feedback worksheet 
Council Work Session Presentation - August 2019
Supplemental Information Community Input as of August 2019
Data on Tree removals and replanting through the Department of City Planning
Tree Trust Fund Fact Sheet
Tree Protection Ordinance 

Community Meeting Presentation - November 2019

Tree Ordinance Draft 1 - March 2020 - PDF
Tree Ordinance Draft 1 - March 2020 - Word document available to mark up and send redlines as comment.
Figure 1: City Design Areas - March 2020
Tree Valuation Spreadsheet - March 2020 - This tool is in progress and we encourage feedback. Ultimately, this would turn into a more user friendly, public facing tool for applicants. 

Looking to see the analysis to date? Check out the
UEF E-Maps databaseThe information shown is in draft form. Please contact us with any questions or clarifications. 

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