New Tree Ordinance Gives Vibrancy to Business District
T. R. Loon lost a tree in front of his house because of poor practices and he did not want to see that happen in other parts of the city, especially in the Williamson Street business corridor that is part of the Williamson/Marquette Neighborhood. It is just 11 blocks from the Wisconsin State Capitol.
T. R. was pleased that the City of Madison came to realize that many significant street trees had been lost due to post-construction stress and passed a new tree preservation ordinance in 2009. The ordinance included specifications for street and sidewalk construction contractors and provided penalties for tree damage.
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources helped city council create the ordinance by providing technical advice and information about ordinances in other Wisconsin communities. The result has ensured that tree canopy and roots are protected during construction and new trees are planted in available locations. Sidewalks are designed to allow for future tree growth as well as to encourage pedestrian use.
T. R. says that he has seen new restaurants opening along Williamson Street as well-cared for trees create a vibrant community hub. "We've enhanced the pedestrian aspect of this neighborhood," says T. R. "Parts of Williamson Street have that classic canopy look that makes the neighborhood more inviting. It's one of the most vibrant pedestrian neighborhoods in Madison."