Townsville City Council has formally adopted a Public Tree Management Policy to guide and inform the process around managing trees that form the public tree network.
This follows an overwhelmingly positive community consultation period that received over 70 submissions from residents and local organisations.
Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill said the consultation process showed just how passionate the community is about protecting trees in public spaces.
“We went to consultation on the Public Tree Management Policy to see what appetite there was within the community for it’s implementation and the results showed that this is the right step forward,” Cr Hill said. “Trees are a vital part of our urban landscapes, and this policy sets our clear guidelines for how they should be managed by Council, including when a tree can be removed or pruned. This ensures that trees are only removed when any risks posed by preserving the tree cannot be managed or mitigated through arboriculture methods.”
Cr Hill said the Public Tree Management Policy would also involve the creation of Significant Tree Register for highly valued trees throughout the city.
“A key part of this policy is ensuring that we create a Significant Tree Register that features trees of botanical, ecological, and cultural importance as well as trees that are local landmarks,” she said. “Under the policy, none of the trees included on this register will be removed without public consultation and only if alternatives to removal are not possible.”