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    Our Forestry Division is responsible for maintaining approximately 35,000 street trees on 450 miles of city streets and for park trees throughout the parks system. This Division provides a continuous program of tree planting, trimming and removal of City street trees in order to maintain a healthy and abundant tree population. Routine trimming and removals are done year round, and tree planting is done during the spring and fall. 

    To report a city tree problem such as a downed or hanging limb, dead/dying/diseased tree, or a routine trimming request please call 448-CITY (2489) for an inspection or  
    click here  to report it online. 

    City of Syracuse Arborist: Steve Harris, (315) 473-4330 Ext. 3014  

    Please note, per city ordinance, no person shall trim or remove any tree in the city right of way without a written permit from the City Arborist.  Tree planting shall not take place in the city right of way or public space without a written permit from the City Arborist.  This applies to all property owner, developers and utilities. For more information or to obtain a permit contact (315) 473-4330.                 


    CLICK HERE to read what people think about trees in our city? The Syracuse Parks, in partnership with Onondaga Earth Corps, surveyed over 1000 people and held 8 public meetings to gather input on how we should manage our urban forests.


    ReLeaf Syracuse is the City’s new initiative to develop a plan for the future of the City’s trees and to sustain the partnerships to work the plan into reality. The initiative is led by Syracuse Parks Department, Onondaga Earth Corps and a steering committee representing community organizations, business and government agencies.

    It’s been almost 20 years since the devastating Labor Day Storm that toppled thousands of trees across Syracuse (on public and private land). Despite efforts to bring back trees that were lost, Syracuse’s tree canopy cover of 27% has remained relatively unchanged since 1998 and is below the average of 34% for cities east of the Mississippi River. But City officials and numerous community partners want to change that through the initiative ReLeaf Syracuse.


    The purpose of ReLeaf Syracuse is to develop an urban forest master plan that provides a roadmap to a healthy, safe and expanding tree canopy in the city.  The plan will have definable and measurable 5-year and 20-year goals. A critical part of the initiative is to build on and expand partnerships to implement what is proposed in the plan.

    Once complete the new master plan for trees in the city will be used to inform and update the city’s municipal tree ordinance which was last modified in 1981.


    ReLeaf Syracuse was the name of the steering committee formed by Mayor Roy Bernardi to develop a response plan after the devastating loss of trees following the Labor Day Storm of 1998. The committee disbanded in 2001 however, the spirit of that effort and the master plan that was developed after the storm remains the today through community stewardship and youth employment programs dedicated to the planting and care of trees.


    January 2018: Convened  Steering Committee  comprised of community stakeholders and tree experts 

    March - May 2018: Held three stakeholder meetings with 40+ attendees, each focused on a different aspect of management of the urban forest.

    July - September 2018: Community input process to included 7 public meetings throughout the city as well as a survey on people’s opinions about trees.

    November 2018: Shared the results of public input process

    September - November 2019:  Draft Master Plan released for Public Comments

    January 2020:  Release Final Master Plan

    March 2020: Release Revised Draft Municipal Tree Ordinance for Review and Reconvene stakeholders to strategize plan implementation

    September 2020:  Submit Ordinance to Common Council for adoption                                                                       

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