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The greatest structure in a city is probably a tree.

September 1, 2020

Trees are incredible. They sequester carbon, control temperature (Every 10 per cent increase in tree canopy cover can reduce land surface temperatures by 1.13 degrees Celsius.), reduce storm water, increase property values, encourage walking, they create habitats for birds, they sound great in the wind, they reduce the cost of cooling nearby buildings.They create oxygen which we can breathe! They remove pollutants from the air.

No wonder tree-lined streets increase property values. "Recent research shows that urban tree canopy is greatly valued by communities. A 10 per cent increase in street tree canopy can increase the value of properties by an average of $50,000"  

They are even good for mental health: our results suggests the type of green space does matter. Adults with 30% or more of their neighbourhood covered in some form of tree canopy had 31% lower odds of developing psychological distress.

They grow by themselves, quietly. In an inner city - where they have to be kept clean - they only cost $80/year to maintain.

A development feels naked with trees:

At an urban scale we think of trees as a percentage of canopy cover. This image is a data layer in Giraffe coloured by percentage canopy cover. The parks stick out, and the wealthier North Shore is conspicuously green.

It's a great piece of data to start thinking about trees in your scheme, if you are working in Sydney.

All of this is why we wrote an app that automatically places trees in areas the user specifies, and then creates a report giving the user the numbers they need to determine feasibility.

Video of the app in action here: