The Sterling Heights has engaged urban forestry consulting firm Davey Resource Group Inc. to conduct a comprehensive inventory and assessment of an estimated 37,500 trees on public streets in City parks.
The project is part of an ongoing initiative to help City officials understand the current tree population, prioritize tree maintenance and ensure the community has a healthy and sustainable urban forest.
The tree inventory effort the City initiated with a pilot program in 2021 expands this fall and winter when Davey’s professional arborists will be inspecting and mapping existing trees within the right-of-ways along City streets. Arborists will be recording basic information about each tree, such as species, size and health assessment.
“An inventory is an important step in strengthening a proactive approach to tree maintenance,” said Lee Mueller, a forestry specialist supporting the City’s inventory project. “We will identify any preliminary pruning or removal needs in addition to providing detailed computer mapping of all the trees to aid the City in the future planting, planning, and management of Sterling Heights’ urban forest resources.”
Davey Resource Group arborists will use handheld computers loaded with information and aerial photographs from existing Geographic Information System (GIS) to mark the location and record specific details of each tree. Residents will be able to easily identify arborists working in the area as they will all be wearing yellow vests with the company’s name and logo.
Arborists will deliver all captured data to the Sterling Heights Planning Department after field work is complete. City officials will use this new data to prioritize tree planting and maintenance activities across the community.
“Trees provide numerous benefits such as shading and cooling as well as improvements to air quality,” said Sterling Heights City Development Director Jason Castor. “We’re looking forward to using this data to strengthen Sterling Heights’ urban forestry program.”
Data collected during the tree inventory will also be used in a countywide Green Macomb Urban Forest Partnership initiative. This initiative helps foster collaboration, expand awareness and promote action that will contribute to Southeast Michigan’s urban forest goals.
“Sterling Heights is committed to creating a sustainable community,” said Sterling Heights Mayor Michael Taylor. “Trees are huge part of that commitment, and we are invested in making sure Sterling Heights remains a designated Arbor Day Foundation ‘Tree City USA’ for years to come.”
For more information about this important project, residents can call Alexis Richards in the City’s Planning Department at (586) 446-2386.