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(A) General design standards.
(1) Incorporate the preservation of trees into the overall design of the plat through the sensitive placement of roads and developed lots;
(2) Structures, structure pad siting, parking areas and driveways shall be designed to “fit” existing topography and tree cover to the maximum feasible extent;
(3) The design and location of utilities and installation methods shall preserve trees to the greatest extent practicable;
(4) Retaining walls shall be used where appropriate to manage grade changes in order to protect trees;
(5) Shared driveways and other design features shall be explored in order to protect trees;
(6) Flexibility on street standards and setback requirements shall be explored in order to protect trees; and
(7) Trees shall be preserved in areas of steep slopes and unstable soils as well as in areas needed to protect and preserve existing drainage patterns.
(B) Tree preservation goal setting, review process and submittal requirements.
(1) The applicant shall meet with City staff prior to submittal of the concept plan to determine the most feasible and practical placement of buildings, parking, driveways, streets, storage and other physical features, in order that the fewest trees are destroyed or damaged.
(2) During the concept design and review phase, goals for the preservation of trees shall be determined by the Planning Commission and City Council based on the general quantity, quality and location of trees. A 60 to 70% goal for the preservation of canopy cover in the plat will typically be considered; however, a higher or lower percentage may be set depending on the topography, soils and drainage patterns. Total canopy cover will be determined using aerial photography. Proposed grading limits shall be overlaid on the aerial photo. Canopy cover within the grading limits is assumed to be removed and canopy cover outside of the grading limits is assumed to be preserved. Percentage of cover removed and saved shall be submitted for concept review. Achievement of the tree preservation goal will be evaluated as part of preliminary plat approval.
(3) (a) For concepts not meeting the preservation goal determined for the plat, a tree inventory and preservation plan shall be required for all areas within the grading limits of the plan and submitted as part of the preliminary plat submittal requirements. The inventory shall be completed for all trees over four inches DBH (diameter at breast height as measured at 54 inches above the ground). The purpose of the tree inventory is to assess the impact on trees and guide the development of a preservation plan through alternative designs that will achieve the overall preservation goal determined for the plat.
(b) Based on the tree inventory, lots with ten or more trees over four inches (DBH) shall be designated as custom graded lots in the preservation plan, unless exempted by the City. The lots shall not be included in mass grading at time of street and utility installation. The siting of structures and grading plans for each custom graded lot shall be reviewed and approved as part of the building permit approval process.
(c) The tree inventory and preservation plan shall be submitted by a forester or landscape architect retained by the applicant and shall consist of the following items:
1. Location of all trees within the grading limits on the property being platted with an ID number that corresponds to the inventory;
2. Tree inventory that includes the size (DBH), species and ID number of all trees within the grading limits;
3. Areas of mass grading;
4. Designated lots to be custom graded at time of building permit application;
5. Trees proposed to be saved and trees proposed to be removed; and
6. Tree protection zones located within the drip line around trees to be saved.
(d) The tree inventory and preservation plan will be evaluated as part of the preliminary plat review process for conformance to the tree preservation goal established by the City in the concept plan phase.
(C) Tree protection management practices. All subdivisions must comply with the following tree protection management practices unless exempted by the City. The practices shall implement any tree preservation plan approved by the City as part of the preliminary plat approval process:
(1) Tree removal procedures including directional felling away from existing trees to be saved and trenching to separate root systems prior to bulldozing trees or stumps;
(2) Installation of signage at all tree protection areas that instructs workers to stay out;
(3) Installation of fencing or safety netting to designate the tree protection zone for all tree to be preserved as identified in the tree preservation plan (if required) or as determined by the tree preservation goal determined at concept phase; (The safety netting shall be located at the drip line around all trees to be saved for all trees in the area being platted. The City must approve the location of all safety netting.)
(4) Designation of a construction staging area along with a designated area for the storage of equipment and stockpiling of materials that is not within tree protection zone or buffer areas;
(5) Construction access locations that minimize impact on tree preservation;
(6) No grading permit will be approved nor soil disturbance occur within the subdivision until the development agreement is approved, and tree protection management practices are in place on site;
(7) Fill shall not be placed against tree trunks, within the drip line, or in critical root zones of trees to be saved;
(8) Pruning of oak trees shall not take place from April 1 through October. If wounding of oak trees occurs, a non-toxic tree wound dressing must be applied immediately. Excavators shall have a non-toxic tree wound dressing with them at the work site;
(9) Tree protection measures shall remain in place until all grading and construction is completed; and
(10) Creation of a temporary access road. When temporary site access through a significant tree stand or a critical root zone of a significant tree to be saved is necessary, it shall meet the following standards.
(a) The temporary access road shall be routed in a manner that is least disruptive to the significant tree stand per the approval of the Zoning Administrator.
(b) Temporary access roads shall not exceed 25 feet in width and shall be delineated by snow fencing or safety fencing.
(c) An eight-inch deep cover of wood chip mulch shall be placed over the temporary access road to cushion the critical root zones from compaction.
(d) The temporary access road shall be removed as soon as other access routes become available.
(D) Certification of tree protection management plan implementation. After mass grading has been completed and streets and utilities installed, the subdivider’s forester or landscape architect shall:
(1) Certify in writing to the City the status of all trees to be saved or removed as stated in the approved tree protection management plan; and
(2) Certify in writing to the City that all tree protection measures were installed.
(E) Financial security. The developer shall provide a financial guarantee acceptable to the City as part of the development agreement to guarantee the preparation and implementation of the tree protection management plan and the replacement of all trees which were to be saved, but were actually destroyed or damaged. The financial security shall be in an amount as determined by the City. The financial security will be released upon approval by the City, following, certification in writing by the forester or landscape architect indicating that the tree protection management practices were installed on mass graded lots and any tree replacement is completed.
(Ord. passed 3-20-2002, § 25, sub. 3)