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Bill BL2020-288

An ordinance to amend Section 17.20.120 of the Metropolitan Code related to street trees (Proposal No. 2020Z-009TX-001). 

WHEREAS, Nashville’s General Plan, NashvilleNext, provides guidelines by which Metropolitan Nashville grows and develops; and

WHEREAS, an important feature in this growth includes improvements of public spaces, safely walkable access to goods and service throughout the county, and other benefits to residents, neighborhoods, and businesses; and

WHEREAS, beginning July 2017, Metro expanded the strategic framework for sidewalk requirements and has over the last several years focused on improved implementation of sidewalks across Nashville and Davidson County; and

WHEREAS, Metro updated development regulations for tree retention and replacement to increase Nashville’s overall tree canopy, enhance the pedestrian realm, retain stormwater, and beautify Nashville’s developed areas; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to Section 17.20.120 of the Metropolitan Code of Laws, sidewalks are required to be constructed with certain types of development and based on certain locational criteria, including for multi-family and nonresidential development in NashvilleNext centers; and

WHEREAS, requiring street trees to be planted in the furnishing/green zone for sidewalks constructed meeting these criteria will help the Metropolitan Government meet multiple strategic goals.


Section 1. That Section 17.20.120 of the Metropolitan Code, the Zoning Ordinance for the Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County, is hereby amended by adding the following provisions as subsection C.2.c:
c. For multi-family and nonresidential development or redevelopment, street trees shall be required within the grass strip/green zone or frontage zone for any sidewalk constructed within a center designated in the general plan.
i. Trees shall be installed at a rate of one tree per thirty feet of frontage, or portion thereof.
ii. Street trees shall be chosen from the Urban Forestry Recommended and Prohibited Tree and Shrub List and shall be a minimum of two-inch caliper and a minimum of six feet in overall height. Canopy trees shall be installed except where conflicts with overhead utility lines exist. In those instances, understory trees may be substituted.
iii. The final location and spacing of street trees and proposed planting area dimensions and standards shall be subject to review and approval by the Urban Forester and Metro Public Works.
iv. The owner of the property frontage along which the street trees are installed shall maintain the street trees installed per this title to the International Society of Arboriculture Standards.
v. Required street trees shall be depicted on a landscape plan, which shall be submitted with construction drawings for the sidewalks.
vi. Trees installed pursuant to this section shall be eligible for credit toward the tree density required by Chapter 17.24 of this title.

Section 2. This ordinance shall take effect from and after its passage and such change be published in a newspaper of general circulation, the welfare of the Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County requiring it.


Angie Henderson, Burkley Allen, Emily Benedict

Legislative History

IntroducedMay 5, 2020

Passed First ReadingMay 5, 2020

Referred toPlanning Commission
Codes, Fair, and Farmers Market
Planning, Zoning, and Historical Committee
Public Works Committee

Public Hearing SetJune 9, 2020

Substitute AdoptedJune 9, 2020

Requests for ADA accommodation should be directed to the Metropolitan Clerk at 615-862-6770.

Last Modified: 06/12/2020 5:10 PM