The City of Bellingham is seeking public input to guide how our community manages and enhances the trees and forests that make up Bellingham’s urban forest.
An urban forest includes everything from street trees, parks and forested open spaces to private trees. Community input will help create the City’s first Urban Forestry Management Plan (UFMP), a strategic plan for maintaining and enhancing a healthy and desirable urban forest. The input received will be used to develop the plan’s vision, goals, and priority strategies.
“Our city is populated with magnificent trees, and they are an essential part of what makes Bellingham beautiful,” Mayor Seth Fleetwood said. “Our healthy trees and forests are also vital for wildlife, water quality, human health and property values. Our studies show that in recent years Bellingham’s overall tree canopy cover has remained relatively stable, but individual areas have had gains and losses. Our community cares enormously about our trees and forests. We are committed to wisely stewarding those that stand today and planting more in the future. Creating a management plan for our trees and forests will help us establish our community vision and turn our commitments into actions.”
All community members are invited to provide feedback- regardless of knowledge or experience- through the following open houses and online engagement opportunities:
- In-person open house on Sunday, May 15 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the Bellingham Public Library, Central Library Lecture Room. ASL and Spanish interpretation and activities for children will be provided.
- Virtual open house on Wednesday, May 18 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. through Zoom. Closed captioning and Spanish interpretation will be provided.
- Engage Bellingham UFMP Project page, available May 9 through June 15. Includes an online survey in English and Spanish, information about outreach events, and an interactive map to share feedback on which places our community values and would like to see improved.
There will be additional opportunities for community engagement in 2023 during the final planning phase for the UFMP.
Please visit cob.org/UFMP to learn more and access all input opportunities.