Protection of Trees Bylaw 9958

This bylaw affects all private property owners in Vancouver wanting to remove a tree.

If you want to remove a tree, you need a permit to do so for every tree that has a diameter (width) of 20 cm (8") or greater, measured at 1.4 m (4'6") above the ground. A tree trunk with a diameter of 20 cm (8") will have a circumference of approximately 64 cm (25").

Permit display

The tree permit must be posted in a visible location during tree removal.

Single tree removal

Property owners can normally apply to remove only one tree during a 12-month period, and they are required to replace the tree removed from the site.

Multiple tree removal

Under certain conditions, property owners may be granted permission to remove more than one tree in a 12-month period, but only if one of the following conditions applies:

  • The tree on a development site is located within the building envelope
  • The tree is located such that a proposed garage or other accessory building cannot be located so as to retain the tree
  • An accredited plumber certifies that the roots of the tree are directly interfering with, or blocking, sewer or drainage systems
  • An arborist certifies the tree is dead, dying, or hazardous
  • An arborist certifies the tree is directly interfering with utility wires and cannot be pruned and still maintain its reasonable appearance or health

Property development and trees

All property development, whether it's renovation or new building, requires you to retain all the existing trees located on your property.

All trees to be retained on the site require protection during any construction or development. All trees on adjacent properties or boulevard trees that are in danger of being damaged must be protected as well.

An arborist's report is required to make a development permit application.

Explanation of amendments since January 1, 2014

  • Appendix A (11 KB) is revised to include recent amending Bylaw numbers
  • Section 4 (77 KB) has been amended to reflect new fees, as enacted by Council on October 22, 2013, effective January 1, 2014

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Did you know

Street trees in Vancouver

Vancouver has more than 139,000 street trees that are maintained by the Park Board. Three thousand more are planted every year.

Trees in Stanley Park 

Trees play an important role in creating and maintaining a healthy ecosystem by cleaning the air, absorbing carbon dioxide, producing oxygen, absorbing stormwater, reducing erosion and providing habitat and food for wildlife.

Last modified: Mon, 31 Mar 2014 13:47:38