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Rochester’s “Urban Forest Master Plan” seeking public input for new update

todayDecember 20, 2023 3

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The new update, which is hoped to be completed by June of 2024 is set to be the fourth update to the “Urban Forest Master Plan” since it was first released in 1993. This follows the widespread tree damage from the 1991 Ice Storm.

Now the city is seeking your input, and also hoping to help you gain a better understanding of the importance of having an “urban forest”, according to Brian Liberti who is the Director of Buildings and Parks for the City of Rochester.

“What we’re looking for is just you know how people feel about trees where they might want to see more trees, planted the types of trees they want to see and just ourwant me t overall thoughts on the on the benefits that trees provide,” said Liberti.

Most of the benefits that do come with them are often so much a part of everyday life that you might not even notice.

“Everything from cooling in the summertime, they produce oxygen, provide wildlife habitats. They reduced stormwater runoff. The list goes on and on,” said Liberti.

Maintaining the trees is a massive undertaking with over 66,000 trees spread across the city. They’re constantly battling the weather like after the 1991 ice storm while also dealing with invasive species like the emerald ash borer which appeared at the time of the last update in 2012.

“The new invasive species is spotted lanternfly outbreak was just found within the county within the last couple months so we’re monitoring for that,” said Liberti.

Each update provides a benchmark for the next as they evaluate each tree for its species, size, age, and health among other criteria.

“So that’s what we’re taking a look at now. That’s what the update provides. It provides a snapshot in time of where our conditions of our trees are,” said Liberti

In addition, while some projects happening around the city, like the inner loop north project, won’t be explicitly included in the plan the Division of Forestry will be working to continue to add the urban forest as they can.

“An opportunity to comment on where the tree should go and the type of tree is. It should be planted for any type of reconstruction project. So [the] inner loop north project, you know once it gets down a little bit further down the road into some some more concrete design, and for sure you’ll have some input in that,” said Liberti.

The city as mentioned is hosting public input sessions. A virtual one is being held on Wednesday, December 20, at 6 p.m. which you can access here. Two more are planned to be in person. The first on Monday, January 8, also at 6 p.m. at the Arnett Branch Library. The second is on Wednesday, January 10, at 6:30 p.m. at the Children’s School of Rochester #15, in the Gym.

There is also an online survey available if you are not able to attend any of the in-person or virtual sessions.

​ ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The new update, which is hoped to be completed by June of 2024 is set to be the fourth update to the “Urban Forest Master Plan” since it was first released in 1993. This follows the widespread tree damage from the 1991 Ice Storm.

Now the city is seeking your input, and also hoping to help you gain a better understanding of the importance of having an “urban forest”, according to Brian Liberti who is the Director of Buildings and Parks for the City of Rochester.

“What we’re looking for is just you know how people feel about trees where they might want to see more trees, planted the types of trees they want to see and just ourwant me t overall thoughts on the on the benefits that trees provide,” said Liberti.

Most of the benefits that do come with them are often so much a part of everyday life that you might not even notice.

“Everything from cooling in the summertime, they produce oxygen, provide wildlife habitats. They reduced stormwater runoff. The list goes on and on,” said Liberti.

Maintaining the trees is a massive undertaking with over 66,000 trees spread across the city. They’re constantly battling the weather like after the 1991 ice storm while also dealing with invasive species like the emerald ash borer which appeared at the time of the last update in 2012.

“The new invasive species is spotted lanternfly outbreak was just found within the county within the last couple months so we’re monitoring for that,” said Liberti.

Each update provides a benchmark for the next as they evaluate each tree for its species, size, age, and health among other criteria.

“So that’s what we’re taking a look at now. That’s what the update provides. It provides a snapshot in time of where our conditions of our trees are,” said Liberti

In addition, while some projects happening around the city, like the inner loop north project, won’t be explicitly included in the plan the Division of Forestry will be working to continue to add the urban forest as they can.

“An opportunity to comment on where the tree should go and the type of tree is. It should be planted for any type of reconstruction project. So [the] inner loop north project, you know once it gets down a little bit further down the road into some some more concrete design, and for sure you’ll have some input in that,” said Liberti.

The city as mentioned is hosting public input sessions. A virtual one is being held on Wednesday, December 20, at 6 p.m. which you can access here. Two more are planned to be in person. The first on Monday, January 8, also at 6 p.m. at the Arnett Branch Library. The second is on Wednesday, January 10, at 6:30 p.m. at the Children’s School of Rochester #15, in the Gym.

There is also an online survey available if you are not able to attend any of the in-person or virtual sessions. Read More NewsRochesterFirst  

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