Community Associations for Environmental Sustainability

CAFES Trees & Zoning Position Paper

CAFES has published version 1.0 of a position paper on Trees and the new Zoning By-law

The paper demonstrates how zoning can regulate and protect space for trees and what specific zoning by-law regulations and metrics can create spaces for canopy trees to thrive to maturity. Some of our recommendations include minimum soil volume requirements, larger front yard setbacks, required soft landscaping space in both front and rear yard, a larger priority for setbacks and trees in major and minor corridors, eliminating car parking minimums, planting in traveled lanes, provisions that require soft landscaped space in outdoor parking lots, and stronger connections between space for trees and engineered solutions for stormwater management.

Supporting this, CAFES made a public delegation presentation on Monday April 29th to the  special Joint Planning and Housing and ARAC committee meeting discussing the first draft of the new zoning by-law (video starts at 1:25). 

Please check out version 1.0 of our position paper below, and if you have questions or feedback, please reach out to Erica at eshardlow@cafesottawa.caIf you are in touch with your councillor, please send a message to them saying that the new Zoning By-law must make solid and metrics-based provisions for trees. Feel free to attach the CAFES position paper and send it to them.

The paper is the work of a CAFES working group of experienced volunteers that was started in November 2023 led by Erica Shardlow, CAFES Trees and Greenspace Coordinator, to discuss the zoning metrics and regulations that would allow for more space for trees in the New Comprehensive Zoning By-law, which is coming out in 2025.

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