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New Community Tree Program

Community Engagement a Core Component of New Community Tree Program


August 23, 2023



Maria Lee, Media & Communications, maria.lee@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-2054

Community Engagement a Core Component of New Community Tree Program

TACOMA, Wash. -- The City of Tacoma has partnered with the Tacoma Tree Foundation to launch Tacoma’s Community Tree Program. With a focus on increasing the urban tree canopy across Tacoma
in an equitable manner through neighborhood-based planting projects and tree giveaways – as well as educational activities that highlight the many social and environmental benefits of trees – community engagement is a core program component.


"Partnerships are key to the success of our long-range efforts to make Tacoma a more livable city for all," said Mayor Victoria Woodards. "I look forward to seeing what we can do through the Community Tree Program with the support of our partners at the Tacoma Tree Foundation."

Through the City’s Neighborhood Planning Program, residents in Tacoma’s McKinley Hill Neighborhood had identified their top priorities. These priorities include developing a neighborhood tree planting program which focuses on outreach and aims to achieve a 25 percent tree canopy cover in the business district and a 35 percent tree canopy cover in residential areas. In direct response, the Community Tree Program will offer 250 street trees to McKinley Hill residents this fall through
Green Blocks: McKinley Hill.


Requests from residents for free street trees in the Green Blocks: McKinley Hill project area will be accepted now through September 17. Through the Community Tree Program, residents will receive support on:

  • Tree selection
  • Utility location
  • Permit submittals
  • Delivery of trees and materials (including TAGRO, stakes, ties, and watering supplies)
  • Tree planting, upon request

Outreach is underway in the McKinley Hill Neighborhood, with a Green Blocks volunteer training event to take place on August 17 at Parable (3502 McKinley Ave. in Tacoma) from 5:30 - 7 PM. A “tree steward” training will be offered on September 16. These efforts culminate with a tree planting that will take place on October 14, which is Green Tacoma Day.


“People in Tacoma are excited about planting trees,” said Tacoma Tree Foundation Executive Director Lowell Wyse. “The Community Tree Program will lower barriers to tree planting by bringing resources and education to neighborhoods experiencing the greatest level of need.”


"Community engagement and involvement are critical to the success of our efforts to grow Tacoma's tree canopy," said Deputy Mayor Kristina Walker. "I urge everyone across our community to join us in this important work."

More information, including details on how to request free street trees, is available here. Community members who have questions about the Community Tree Program can reach out to Lisa Kenny at lkenny@cityoftacoma.org or (253) 341-1315 or Lowell Wyse at info@tacomatreefoundation.org or (517) 258-2457.