Chicago city takes care of trees and conserving the environment through tree ordinance codes. This stipulates what should be followed when handling trees in the city.

Through the Chicago tree ordinance, you are required to obtain a permit to remove some trees.

In this summary, you will find information about private trees, public trees, getting a permit, regulations associated with permits, and which trees require a permit.

Tree removal permit chicago

Remember: Chicago tree ordinance guide is comprehensive providing additional information even on related tree matters.

No. As long as your trees are on your private property then the city does not require you to obtain a permit. However, you have to make sure that you remove your trees through the use of qualified and certified arborists or removal companies to avoid any accidents.

Tree removal permit chicago_2

Can I remove public trees in the city of Chicago?

No. You are not allowed to conduct any tree removal of public trees in Chicago city. This is because the trees are among the preserved trees.

However, if you can get a permit from the forestry department you may be able to do tree removal of public trees.

You have to make sure that you provide all the details required when applying for the permit. It takes a maximum of 7 days for you to get approval after making the application.

Here is a link to the application form.

https://www.chicago.gov/content/dam/city/depts/streets/supp_info/Forestry/Forestry%202015/Permit_Application_Version_11-2015_2a.pdf

Can I appeal a tree permit application in Chicago?

No. You are not allowed to remove your neighbor’s overhanging tree without getting their permission.

However, you can trim any branches overhanging your property. Make sure you return all the branches to them.

However, if it is tree removal, make sure that you get their consent and you are not breaching any tree preservation codes.

Can I remove my neighbor’s overhanging tree in Chicago?

All the trees growing on any public land from streets, parkways, and parks are owned and managed by the city administration.

As a result, all the work required on these trees is coordinated by the Chicago Bureau of Forestry. There are several things that might fall under this which include pruning, trimming, watering, treatment, and removal under some circumstances.

Circumstances under which public trees may be removed in the city of Chicago include the following.

  • If there is a major development taking placed and approved by the city administration.
  • In case the trees are diseased and infested by pests such that they become a hazard to either the public or other trees.
  • If the trees are dead
  • If the trees are interfering with traffic lights or obstructing traffic.

In case the trees are interfering with public utility systems such as gas lines, power lines, and sewer lines.

Who maintains trees on public land in the city of Chicago?

All the trees growing on any public land from streets, parkways, and parks are owned and managed by the city administration.

As a result, all the work required on these trees is coordinated by the Chicago Bureau of Forestry. There are several things that might fall under this which include pruning, trimming, watering, treatment, and removal under some circumstances.

Circumstances under which public trees may be removed in the city of Chicago include the following.

  • If there is a major development taking placed and approved by the city administration.
  • In case the trees are diseased and infested by pests such that they become a hazard to either the public or other trees.
  • If the trees are dead
  • If the trees are interfering with traffic lights or obstructing traffic.

In case the trees are interfering with public utility systems such as gas lines, power lines, and sewer lines.

Is it illegal to remove protected/preserved trees in Chicago?

Yes. It is against the law to remove or damage any trees that are categorized as protected including public trees in the city of Chicago.

Anyone found guilty of such an offense will pay heavy fines as determined by the Bureau of forestry.

Ben McInerney
Author: Ben McInerney - Ben is a qualified arborist with 15 plus years of industry experience in Arboriculture. He ran a successful tree service before turning to writing and publishing. Ben is dedicated to providing users with the most accurate up-to-date information on everything trees.