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Right-of-Way - Tree Removals

Street Tree Removal

Street trees are an integral part of a healthy city.  However, there are times when a tree may need to be removed due to disease, decay, or damage.  A Tree Work Permit and a barricade permit are required for removal/replacement of trees in the right-of-way. Note that submitting an application does not guarantee you a permit, and that you must have the permit in hand before beginning any removal or major pruning work.  In addition, in most situations removal of a street tree will require replacement of the street tree.

Tree removal requires the stump also be removed to at least eight inches below the surface. Tree and stump removal must be completed within 30 days of permit issuance. Failure to obtain a permit or meet the conditions of the permit may result in fines of up to $100 per violation and/or imprisonment in the County Jail for up to 30 days. (TMC 9.18.040).

Hazard Tree Removal

If a street tree is an imminent hazard, call 3-1-1 and request an emergency inspection. Some important things to know about hazard trees:

  • What is a hazard tree? A tree becomes hazardous when one or more characteristics meet or exceed a threshold of risk. Below that threshold, the tree is not considered to be a hazard.

  • How are the risk factors assessed? Risk factors are assessed during a tree risk assessment performed by a Certified Tree Risk Assessor.

  • What is a tree risk assessment? Tree risk assessment examines the whole tree, or a part of it. It is only undertaken when there is a target (people and/or property within striking distance of the tree or its parts) that might be damaged if the tree or tree part were to fail.

Hazardous Tree Assistance Program


Wood Waste Diversion (higher uses than firewood)
Consider other uses for the wood generated from pruning and removals. Below are some companies utilizing urban wood to create furniture and art.


Wane + Flitch

 Vashon Forest Stewards

 Urban Hardwoods

 Madera Woodworking