Trees on development sites
Careful retention of existing trees, hedgerows and shrubs as part of a development can ensure that new buildings will be integrated into a mature landscape, thus raising the overall quality of the scheme.
To maximise such benefits it is essential that existing trees are protected through the design and construction phase until the completion of the scheme.
Trees on development sites may be protected by Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs) and/or by conditions attached to a planning permission.
Tree protection during construction
Early identification and protection of important trees on development sites is essential from the outset. The only way to prevent damage occurring is to exclude construction from around significant trees to be retained.
The British Standard BS 5837 (2012) 'Trees in relation to design, demolition and construction' is the benchmark document for how to successfully take account of and retain suitable trees in proximity to development.
It is essential that a detailed tree survey that complies with the British Standard is undertaken before a scheme is designed. This will schedule the trees according to their suitability for retention and identify the extent of land required to ensure that they have the best chance of survival. Older trees are more vulnerable and they are often the most desirable to retain for both their amenity and conservation value. The tree survey should be carried out by an arboriculturist as detailed within the British Standard otherwise an application may not be considered valid.