10 September 2011
Significant trees and the Development Assessment Panel
Some observations from the DAP Agenda this week.
A significant tree ( >21/2 metres in girth at 1 metre above ground level) can be removed if a resident applies to have it removed from their property and they can prove that either the tree poses significant risk to persons or to property. The dilemma too often faced by the DAP is that people apply to build or extend on their property with every intention of being able to save the significant tree on their property. However, at some time during the building process the tree either shows rapid decline or it is found to be inconvenient to the concept. If the application was put in at the same time as planning consent was sought it would almost certainly have been refused. At the stage they are put in the applicant clearly thinks that the chance is much greater of gaining consent. The link is to a development applicant in Malvern. In this month's Agenda there are applications to remove 9 significant trees, most are recommended for approval for very valid reasons although some are recommended for refusal. At this rate the City would loose over 100 of these trees every year. It is Council's responsibility to find ways to replace these, either by encouraging homeowners to replace trees removed or to find places they can plant them on Council land.