The BHA launched a program in Summer 2016 to encourage property owners to participate with the BHA in enlarging undersized tree pits. They strangle tree roots, deprive the street trees of needed water and nutrients, and cause the adjacent sidewalk to buckle. The undersized pits also undermine the well being of the trees, making them susceptible to disease.
Under the program, the BHA will contribute up to 50% of the cost of the project’s estimated $500-$600 cost, find licensed contractors to perform the work, coordinate with the contractor and City agencies, and monitor the project. Eligible projects involved trees whose pits are under 25 square feet, are situated within a concrete sidewalk, and for which the owner provides consent to the BHA. Owners must be a BHA member prior to the start of the project.
The BHA has identified hundreds of eligible tree pits. Interested property owners should write to the BHA at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the BHA office at 718-858-9193. The BHA reserves the rights to select all qualifying projects.
Brooklyn Heights boasts a relatively dense and healthy canopy trees. As of the summer of 2015, a tree census conducted by the BHA in cooperation with the NYC Parks Department found 1,245 sidewalk trees in a variety of species. The BHA partners with the NYC Parks Department in a multi-faceted approach to the care of our neighborhood’s trees. In addition to advising residents about the need to water the trees in front of their buildings, the BHA will arrange for the pruning of sidewalk trees, using funds contributed by film companies and BHA members’ earmarked donations to the BHA Tree Fund. In 2014 alone, the BHA paid for the planting of 19 new trees throughout the Heights. Periodically, we organize volunteers to conduct surveys to assess the condition of the neighborhood’s trees, most recently as part of the Parks Department’s 2015 Trees Count! The data collected from this most recent initiative will inform the BHA’s next steps.
We need Heights residents to assist us in reporting any dangerous conditions involving trees and especially in the case of accidents. Should you witness damage to a street tree, act quickly to record the vehicle license plate, taking a photo and noting the exact location. Forward these facts to the BHA so we can notify the Parks Department, which follows a process for seeking monetary compensation.
If you’d like to make a donation to the BHA’s Tree Fund, please go here. Thank you!