Wake Forest Unified Development Ordinance - July 2022

Tree Protection, Buffers & Landscaping 8.4 Tree Preservation



Canopy Coverage Requirement

Rural and Suburban Districts

2 canopy trees per 5,000 sq. ft. of parcel area, OR 1 canopy tree and 1 understory tree per 4,000 sq. ft. of parcel area


1 canopy tree per 10,000 sq. ft. of parcel area


1 canopy tree per 10,000 sq. ft. of parcel area – may be waived or altered by the Administrator depending on lot coverage of proposed development and adequate street tree installation.

8.3.2. Priority Tree Protection Areas The minimum canopy coverage requirement may be met through the retention of existing vegetation, supplemental plantings, or a combination of both; however, every reasonable effort should be made to meet the baseline canopy coverage area through the retention of existing vegetation in the following priority areas of the site: A. Required buffer yards between conflicting uses (as defined in this chapter); B. Thoroughfare buffers and streetyards; C. Conservation easements; D. Special Flood Hazard Areas; E. Historic, landmark and/or specimen trees which meet the requirements of Section 8.4.3.

8.4. Tree Preservation

8.4.1. Credits For Tree Preservation Credit may be applied toward the baseline tree canopy requirements by the preservation of existing trees in Priority Tree Protection Areas as well as other additional tree preservation areas on site. Credit will only be applied to existing vegetation that is healthy and meets the requirements of this section. Tree credit rates for each tree preserved shall be determined by the following methods, schedules, and standards: A. Credit for Preservation of Wooded Areas : In order to receive credit for wooded areas, the trees contained in these areas shall be a mixture of healthy and useful canopy and understory trees. The method for calculating tree credits in wooded areas is as follows: one tree per 700 square feet of protected area. Watercourse buffer areas and wetlands are not eligible for the tree credit and the respective amount of parcel area is exempt from the baseline tree coverage requirement. B. Credit for Preservation of Specimen Trees Existing DBH of Preserved Tree(s) Number/Type (Canopy or Understory) of Tree Credits

8” + (Understory)

2 / Understory

20” – 30” 31” – 41”

3 / Canopy 4 / Canopy 5 / Canopy

42” +

DBH shall be rounded off to the nearest inch. Trees must be of Specimen quality. See Section 8.4.3.

C. All Other Trees : All other trees preserved will receive 1 tree credit with the exception of trees less than 2.5 inches DBH and trees with less than 10 years of remaining life, as determined by the Administrator.

Town of Wake Forest Unified Development Ordinance – July 19, 2022


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