The Case for Street Trees

Curated by Landscape Architecture Foundation

Need to advocate for more trees along streets, better tree space design, or preservation of existing tree canopy? Here are some useful precedents, research, and tools to show the environmental, social, and economic benefits of healthy street trees.

  1. Case Study Brief

    Park US 50-After

    Park Avenue/US 50, Phase 1 Redevelopment

    South Lake Tahoe, California

    “Streetscape improvements are part of many revitalization plans, and trees often play a big role. In this case, street trees and large planted areas complement increased building setbacks and wider sidewalks, helping to revitalize this corridor and create a scenic, pedestrian-friendly destination.”

  2. Case Study Brief

    Uptown Normal Circle and Streetscape

    Normal, Illinois

    “We’ve seen many a tree go into decline after maxing out its root space, so we love that this project uses underground structural cells to give more soil volume to the 67 street trees. This is projected to triple their lifespan, saving an estimated $61,000 in tree replacement costs over 50 years.”

  3. Case Study Brief

    The Avenue-After

    The Avenue

    Washington, District Of Columbia

    “LAF is based in DC, so we know how essential shade is for outdoor dining in the summer. Researchers counted an average of 90 individuals dining outside at any given time in summer on The Avenue’s 58-ft wide landscaped sidewalk with double rows of street trees.”

  4. “This easy-to-use online tool calculates stormwater, energy, air quality, and carbon benefits for individual trees. The only required inputs are location, tree species, size, condition, and exposure to sunlight, but users also have the option to calculate the impact on energy use of adjacent buildings.”

  5. Benefits Toolkit

    Operand

    i-Tree Streets (v 5.1)

    USDA Forest Service

    “This free application uses tree inventory data to quantify environmental and aesthetic benefits and their dollar value, including: energy conservation, air quality improvement, CO2 reduction, stormwater control, and property value increase.”

Topics

Temperature & urban heat island, Property values, Operations & maintenance savings, Economic development, Trees, Green communities

Help build the LPS: Find out how to submit a case study and other ways to contribute.