Urban Forestry Early Assistance and Land Use Review

meeting and notes
Portland Parks & Recreation Urban Forestry staff review Early Assistance and Land Use Review materials to identify potential issues and requirements in accordance with Title 11, Trees and Title 33, Zoning Code.
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Purpose of an Early Assistance and/or Land Use Review

  • Identify potential issues and/or impacts on existing street trees, heritage trees and trees on City-owned or managed sites (if applicable).
  • Provide adequate areas for future street tree planting on existing and proposed public streets.
    • Trees on private property are subject to development standards from the Bureau of Development Services. See planning requirements for private property trees or call the Zoning Hotline at 503-823-7526.

Tree Plan Submittal Requirements


A tree plan must be submitted with each phase of review including land use reviews, building permit applications, and public works permits. The tree plan information may be combined with other relevant plan sheets. The tree plan submittal shall include the following information:

  • Existing improvements
  • Any construction staging areason site
  • Proposed alterations
  • Existing street trees 3" (inches) Diameter at Breast Height (DBH) or greater
    • Include size and location
  • Existing on-site trees 6" DBH within 15' (feet) of the limits of disturbance
  • Trees proposed for removal
  • Tree planting proposal, including:

Revisions to Plans 

During the review process plans can change as various requirements are met. 

Any changes to an approved Tree Plan, including amending tree species must be approved by the City Forester.

  • Please note that the City Forester may not approve revised tree planting plans based on the lack of species availability.
  • To facilitate species availability, it is recommended that tree procurement occur approximately 6 months prior to installation.

Tree Mitigation


  • Healthy Street Trees 6” (inches) or greater Diameter at Breast Height (DBH) that are approved for removal shall be replanted with two trees in addition to trees required to be planted to meet Street Tree Planting Standards, below.
  • When street improvements are made to partially or fully unimproved streets:
    • Healthy street trees 12” or greater DBH approved for removal shall be replanted with two trees, with trees planted to meet Street Tree Planting Standards credited towards meeting this requirement.
    • Tree replacement for trees removed shall occur in the street planter strip, on site, or in the same watershed either by planting or by paying a fee in lieu of planting in accordance with table 60-1, below.
  • On City-owned or managed sites, healthy, non-nuisance trees 6” or greater DBH that are approved for removal shall be replanted according to the Administrative Rule for tree replacement standards, below:

Tree Replacement for Development on City Owned or Managed Sites

Size of tree to be removed (inches in diameter)Number of trees to be planted
6 and up to 12Up to 2
More than 12 and up to 20Up to 3
More than 20 and up to 25Up to 5
More than 25Up to 6

Street Tree Planting Standards


  • One street tree shall be planted or retained for each full increment of 25 linear feet per side of street frontage.
    • Planting is exempt when existing above or below grade utilities prevent planting of street trees, or if the existing design of the street will not accommodate street tree planting because the planting strip is less than 3 feet wide, there is not a planting strip, or there is insufficient space to add tree wells.
    • Trees planted to meet street tree planting standards are credited toward mitigation requirements (see above) when street improvements are made to partially or fully unimproved streets. When the required number of trees cannot be planted, a fee in lieu of planting will be required, in accordance with Table 60-1, below.

Table 60-1 Broadleaf Tree Size Requirements

Development TypeTree Size 

On Site


One and Two Family Residential1.5" (inch)1.5"
Multi Dwelling Residential 1.5"2"
All others1.5"2.5"

Tree Planting Specifications

  • If there are fewer than 8 required trees, they may all be the same species.
  • If there are between 8 and 24 required trees, no more than 40 percent can be of one species.
  • If there are more than 24 required trees, no more than 24 percent can be of one species.
  • Street tree species shall conform to the appropriate “City of Portland Approved Street Tree Planting List.” The City Forester may approve or require an alternate or unlisted species.

All required street trees shall be planted in-ground following Standard Drawing Number P-581 “Typical Street Tree installation,” except when in raised planters that are used to meet Bureau of Environmental Services storm water management requirements.

All trees required or approved to be planted by Title 11 shall be planted or payment in lieu of planting made prior to the expiration of the permit or City’s final acceptance of the project, as applicable.

  • However, it is encouraged that planting occur during the wet months or as per City Forester recommendations.
  • Street tree planting may be deferred between May 1 and September 30 upon filing a performance guarantee as provided in Section 11.10.060 or other assurance deemed acceptable by the City Forester or BDS Director as applicable.

Tree Protection Specifications


  • Trees to be retained shall be protected in accordance with Title 11 Trees, Protection Specifications (11.60.030.C).
  • Tree protection shall be shown on the tree plan and include:
    • The distance from the trunk of the tree to the fence.
    • A standard root protection zone is established as follows:
      • A minimum of 1-foot radius (measured horizontally away from the face of the tree trunk) for each inch of tree diameter.
    • Protection fencing shall be a minimum 6-foot high metal chain link construction fence, secured with 8-foot metal posts established at the edge of the root protection zone and permissible encroachment area.

Apply for an Environmental Review 

Learn more about the City of Portland's environmental review process. Get the land use review application and the early assistance application.

Land Division Information

Get helpful information about tree preservation, tree removal and tree review. Learn more about when a tree review is required. 

Tree Preservation on Your Land Division Site Document

Protecting Trees During Construction and Tree Preservation

Before any construction or tree protection activities begin, you must determine what trees or groves on the site will be preserved during construction.

Read the Tree Code, Title 11

Fee Schedule

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