By Dan Burden, Blue Zones Director of Innovation and Inspiration, and the nation’s most recognized authority on walkability, bicycle & pedestrian programs, street corridor & intersection design, traffic flow and calming, and road diets.
[Editor’s note: This was first published on walkable.org in August 2006 and has been slightly adapted and shortened.]
Street trees are of great value to people living, working, shopping, sharing, walking and motoring in and through urban places. For a planting cost of $250-600 (including first 3 years of maintenance), a single street tree returns over $90,000 of direct benefits (not including aesthetic, social and natural) in the lifetime of the tree. Street trees provide so many benefits to those streets they occupy, that they should always be considered as a default urban area street making feature.