Midtown News Center

Midtown Alliance Replaces Dozens of Street Trees in the District

From maples to oaks, dozens of new trees were planted in January.

Published: 02/06/20

Midtown Alliance is kicking off 2020 by planting trees along several key corridors.

Midtown Alliance is kicking off 2020 by planting trees along several key corridors.

Over the past few weeks, Midtown Alliance contractor Bustos Landscaping has replaced 31 street trees in the district. The replacements were necessary after previous trees were removed by other entities, had been stuck by automobiles or simply failed to thrive in the urban environment.

Midtown Alliance contractor Bustos replaced several trees along Armstead Place.Bustos replaced several trees along Armstead Place.

New Additions to Midtown’s Canopy

A few places you can spot the new trees:

  • Armstead Place
  • Cypress Street between 5th and 6th Streets
  • 4th Street between Piedmont Avenue and Juniper Street
  • 1100 Peachtree
  • Windsor Midtown

The new trees range from various types of oaks to hornbeams, elms and maples, with each tree chosen to adhere to the district’s Streetscape Plan. This plan dictates what type of canopy and understory tree species should be planted along each corridor to make them easier to care for and give them the best chance to flourish in Midtown.

Tree and flower replacement in front of 1100 Peachtree.
Tree and flower replacement in front of 1100 Peachtree.

Year-Round Effort

Urban trees face many challenges: small tree wells that constrain growth, risk of being hit by motor vehicles, car and bus exhaust, and damage from dog urine.

There are over 2,500 trees in Midtown’s right-of-way – 20 years ago when the Midtown Improvement District was formed there were fewer than 1,000 – and it takes year-round work to maintain them. Midtown Alliance’s Green team works behind the scenes to care for the trees, with a management schedule that includes not only planting, but pruning and fertilizing. A consulting arborist also inspects each of the district’s trees once a quarter. Read more about our annual tree management program here.

City of Atlanta Tree Removal Policy

If you spend time in Midtown, you might have noticed the recent removal of mature trees along Peachtree Street to make way for development projects, including at 14th Street, where the Campanile building (1155 Peachtree Street) is undergoing a major renovation.

What many residents, workers and visitors in the district may not know is that commercial developers are required to secure permits from the City of Atlanta before removing these trees, and are required to plant replacement trees or provide financial recompense once their projects are completed. Atlanta City Council is currently studying updates to the City’s tree ordinance which could strengthen the rules for removing and restoring trees.  

“While it is a short term disappointment that trees are removed, the code requires replacement, and studies show Atlanta’s canopy actually increased from 28% in 1996 to 47% in 2014,” said Cladie Washburn, Midtown Alliance Director of Capital Projects. 

If you see a damaged street tree in the Midtown Improvement District’s right-of-way or have questions about trees in Midtown, please reach out by emailing Info@MidtownATL.com.