Markham Tree Removal By-Laws

In 2008, Markham enacted a Preservation By-law 1 to regulate or prohibit trees’ destruction or injury within the town. You need a permit to remove a tree within the city, but there are few exceptions. Read on to learn more about Markham tree removal by-laws.

Markham Tree Preservation By-Law

The Markham Tree Preservation By-Law requires that you apply for a permit before injuring or destroying a tree with a trunk diameter of at least 20 centimeters, or 8 inches. You should measure the diameter at 1.37 meters, or 54 inches above the ground at the tree’s base. If you violate this law, you’ll be guilty of an offense and subject to penalties.

Upon receipt of your application, the administrator will review it to decide whether to issue a tree removal permit. You may receive a permit in the following circumstances:

  • If your application meets the requirements of the Tree Preservation By-law.
  • If the application is to allow for the construction or expansion of a municipal-approved structure that requires the removal of the tree, and there’s no viable alternative to the removal of the tree.
  • The tree causes structural damage to load-bearing structures, buildings, or drains.

It’s worth noting that the city will issue any permit issued under this by-law to destroy or injure a tree in the tree owner’s name. The permit expires 90 calendar days after the issuance date unless you submit a written request for an extension before the expiry date.

Pre-construction Requirements in Markham

Before you alter a site 2 through excavation, demolition, or other ways, you’ll need to submit a Tree Assessment and Preservation Plan (TAPP) to the Tree Preservation Technician. The Tree Preservation Technician will only review the TAPP if it contains all the necessary information.

After reviewing the TAPP, the technician may request revisions to it or changes to the proposed development. The changes or modifications are usually to increase the number of trees to be retained or enhance tree destruction mitigation throughout the development process.

Application for Markham Tree Removal Permit

To obtain a tree removal permit in Markham, you’ll need to either fill out an Online Tree Permit Application 3 or complete the Tree Permit Application Form 4. You can then submit the form personally to the Unionville Entrance at the Markham Civic Center, located at 101 Town Centre Boulevard in Markham, ON.

You won’t need to pay a permit fee if your tree is exempt. The city can take up to 30 days to process your application. If after reviewing your application the city determines that the tree removal doesn’t require a permit, your permit fee will be refunded.

Markham Tree Removal By-Laws Enforcement

If you violate any section of the Markham Tree Preservation By-Law, you may be subject to a penalty of at least $500 and up to $100,000. The court may also require you to pay an additional special fine of up to $100,000 if there’s an economic gain from the violation of this by-law.

For more details on Markham tree removal, give a call at (647) 371-5157.