Atlanta has the highest percentage of overall urban tree canopy in the United States.
Providing the city the moniker of the “City in the Forest.”
Trees have their own network, and how they thrive isn’t dependent on commercial versus residential, or mixed use versus single family. But the data we have composed by satellites and permits, divides it by lots. Narrowing down and sifting through the data was formed by our qualitative interviews. Some of what we presumed to be the case, was changed by asking experts and people who interacted with the tree ordinance.
After ideation, we divided the canopy data by it’s lots and looked at density of the canopy versus type of lot and lot size. We also added in qualitative interviews from citizen, conservationist, and government perspectives.
The project included interviews from city planners, conservationist, utilities, developers, and homeowners to gather perspectives. Through interviews we discovered how and why trees are taken down and the different processes for tree care from an individual or utility.
Single-family homes contribute enormously to Atlanta’s tree canopy. Townhomes, condos, and other multi-family dwellings often have little to no tree coverage.
Densely developed areas, such as downtown, surrounding neighborhoods, and former Atlanta Housing Authority developments have less than 5% tree cover.
In the datasets, we see few permits for removal from utility companies.
City of Atlanta: Parcels, 2012, City Parks, 2015
Trees Atlanta: Planted Trees, 1994-2014
Georgia Tech: Urban Tree Canopy, 2008, Watershed, 2008, Thermal heat map, 2011
Further research included news articles, studies, and other data visualizations.
Biqing Li, Becky Scheel, Benjamin Sugar, John Thompson
My responsibilities included research, interviews, and design.
We would have liked to focus on the anomalies and lack of data. For instance, taking a look as to what the utilities decided to report on in their acts of “good faith” as it pertains to removal.
Ryan Gravel at Sixpitch, Matt Davis and Tabitha Schwartz at Trees Atlanta, Julia Liu, Kathy Evans at City of Atlanta, Matt Chambers at Georgia Power, Jon Love at Google Fiber, and Caroline Foster.