High Risk Tree Management Plan

Hunterdon County, NJ, USA

Risk management is a well-established concept in the management of public spaces. Acceptable levels of risk have been recognized or defined for most basic infrastructure elements such as sidewalks, curbs, streets, playgrounds, and utilities. In many communities, these elements are assessed and managed according to acceptable levels of risk that are specified within written policies or enacted through management practices. Although not all pot-holes can be immediately filled in, not all heaving sidewalks immediately repaired, not all burned-out street light bulbs immediately replaced, a successful risk management program provides a community with a systematic approach to implement corrective actions within a reasonable time frame.

The rights-of-way (ROW) along roadways maintained by Hunterdon County, NJ consist of both the gray infrastructure (buildings, streets, utilities) and the green infrastructure; “the urban and community forest”. Although gray infrastructure has long been assessed and monitored for acceptable levels of risks, green infrastructure has for the most part not received the same subjective evaluations. The concept of considering or evaluating risks in the context of location and condition is less applied with the green infrastructure. Trees are labeled either as “high-risk/hazardous” or not.

Trees growing within the public ROW along roadways comprise the urban and community forest and are an integral part of the county and individual community’s infrastructure. These trees provide the benefits of shading to reduce pavement wear, provide visual and sound buffers, reduce stormwater by intercepting precipitation, stabilize soils, provide wildlife habitat, and conserve energy use. Evaluating, monitoring, and mitigating tree risk is paramount to the public’s wellbeing and to preserve and enhance the benefits of trees shared by the communities.

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High Risk Tree Management Plan

Hunterdon County, NJ


White Ash


Total Trees

321 Trees

Risk Removal Recommendation