Tree removal occurs when trees are dead dying, diseased, or hazardous. Public trees are protected by Massachusetts State Law Chapter 87. The removal of a healthy public tree requires an advertised public hearing. If a tree is declared by the Tree Warden to be an immediate hazard to the public, a hearing is not required.
We do not remove City trees without good reason. We do not remove trees because they drop leaves or acorns, because it has grown too large or shades your lawn, or because it is not conveniently located. We will remove trees that are hazardous. In the context of state law, a hazard tree poses a threat to persons and/or property. As defined by the International Society of Arboriculture, a hazard tree must meet three criteria:
1. The tree is sufficiently large enough to cause damage should it fall;
2. The tree has a target (that would be damaged should it fall);
3. The tree has a condition that would make it likely to fall.
We will promptly inspect requests for removal. In many cases, a tree may be developing a condition that would ultimately make it a hazard, but not imminently. The removal of such trees requires a public hearing as prescribed by state law. In some cases, the entire tree may not be hazardous, but some maintenance work is required. We will enter that work request into our database and schedule the work within our priorities.
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Dept of Public Works
147 Hampshire St
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