Chapter 18.85


18.85.000    Purposes.

18.85.010    Street plan adopted.

18.85.020    Permits.

18.85.030    Duties of director of public works.

18.85.040    Abuse of street trees.

18.85.050    Replanting and replacement.

18.85.060    Visibility blockage.

18.85.000 Purposes.

The purposes of regulations for street trees are:

A. To protect existing street trees by regulating their maintenance and removal.

B. To provide for new street trees on existing and new streets by specifying appropriate trees for particular areas, based on the following factors:

1. Traffic visibility and interference with pedestrian, bicycle or vehicular traffic;

2. Damage to utilities, streets or sidewalks;

3. Control of wind, erosion and noise;

4. Maintenance;

5. Appearance, particularly the enhancement of major city entrance points and streets, and the use of certain trees to give neighborhood areas visual identity.

18.85.010 Street plan adopted.

The Edmonds Street Plan (1982), as issued by the director of public works and approved by the architectural design board is hereby adopted by this reference and incorporated herein as if set forth in full. A copy of the Edmonds Street Tree Plan (1982) shall be kept on file with the city clerk for public inspection and use during regular city business hours. All planting of street trees and other landscaping of streets shall conform to the Edmonds Street Tree Plan (1982). [Ord. 2387, 1983].

18.85.020 Permits.

A. Required. No person shall plant, remove, prune or otherwise change a tree on a street, right-of-way, parking or planting strip or other public place without a permit from the director of public works. This permit requirement does not apply to city employees under the direction of the director of public works.

B. Application. The application shall be filed with the director of public works, containing information as required by the director.

C. Issuance. The director of public works shall issue the permit if the proposal conforms to the street tree plan, the applicant demonstrates knowledge of the proper care and maintenance of trees, and the director is satisfied that the proposed method and workmanship is adequate.

18.85.030 Duties of director of public works.

A. Enforcement. The director of public works shall enforce this chapter, inspect work done under this chapter and maintain city street trees in healthy growing conditions.

B. Improper Planting. Whenever any tree is planted contrary to the provisions of this chapter, the director of public works may remove the tree. A second violation constitutes a misdemeanor.

18.85.040 Abuse of street trees.

Unless specifically authorized by the director of public works, no person shall damage any street tree, attach any rope, wire, nails, advertising posters or other contrivance to any street tree; allow any gaseous, liquid or solid substance which is harmful to trees to come into contact with them; set fire or permit any fire to burn when such fire or the heat thereof will injure any portion of any street tree; excavate any ditches, tunnels, trenches or lay any drive within a radius of 10 feet of any street tree; deposit, place or store any materials which may impede the free passage of water and fertilizer to the roots of any street tree.

18.85.050 Replanting and replacement.

A. Required. When it is necessary to remove a street tree in connection with paving of a sidewalk, or the paving or widening of the portion of a street or highway used for vehicular traffic, the city shall replant the tree(s) or replace them. If conditions prevent replanting, this requirement may be satisfied if any equivalent number of trees are planted nearby in accord with the street tree plan.

B. Size and Cost. Replacements shall meet the standards specified in the street tree plan for size, species and placement. The permittee shall bear the costs of removal and replacement.

C. Specifications. Removal, planting and replacement of all street trees shall conform to the standards in the material labeled “Standards for Planting Street Trees Within the City of Edmonds,” three copies of which are on file with the city clerk, and which is incorporated by this reference as if set forth in full.

18.85.060 Visibility blockage.

A. Pruning Required. Any property owner who owns property on any street shall prune or otherwise prohibit private trees or other vegetation growing on his property in such manner that they will not block or shade the light from the street lights, obstruct the passage of persons on the sidewalks, obstruct vision of traffic signs, or obstruct the view of any intersection or alley intersection.

B. Enforcement.

1. If any property owner fails to prune or take other appropriate action in order to prevent visibility blockage or restore visibility as set forth in subsection (A) of this section, and the director of public works has actual knowledge of the condition, then the director of public works may, by written notice, order such person to prune or take other appropriate action with respect to such trees or vegetation within 14 days after written notice is sent. Notice shall be sent, postage paid, in the U.S. mail and presumed received two days following such mailing. The notice shall specify the action to be taken and inform the property owner(s) that failure to comply is subject to criminal prosecution as a misdemeanor in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 5.50 ECDC or as a civil violation pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 20.110 ECDC.

2. If a person to whom notice is sent does not comply within the time specified in the written notice, in addition to any other action which the city may take, the director of public works may effectuate the pruning of the trees or other vegetation and take any other appropriate action to correct the view blockage. The cost of such action shall be recorded and reported to the hearing examiner as provided below. The director of public works, in his sole discretion, may then take the actions set forth in subsection (B)(3) of this section.

3. The director of public works may:

a. Refer the matter to the city’s prosecutor for prosecution as a misdemeanor. Failure to correct in accordance with the provisions of written notice within the time specified shall constitute a misdemeanor punishable in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 5.50 ECC. Each and every day in which the property fails to take corrective action shall be considered a separate day of violation.

b. At his option, the director of public works may utilize the civil enforcement procedures of Chapter 20.110 ECDC; provided, that the notice provided herein shall constitute the notice required under ECDC 20.110.040(A). The enforcement process shall therefore begin with the notice of civil violation in accordance with the provisions of ECDC 20.110.040(B) appealable pursuant to the provisions of subsection (C) of said section. In addition to the fines provided for by Chapter 20.110 ECDC, the hearing examiner shall also assess the reasonable costs incurred in connection with subsection (B)(2) of this section. [Ord. 3788 § 13, 2010].