Trees in the Public Right of Way
There are approximately 250,000 trees planted in parkways and curbsides in San José in the public right of way. They are subject to protections granted in the San José Municipal Code Section 13.28 (PDF). Permits are required to be obtained for planting, pruning, and removing these street trees from the Arborist’s Office. The sidewalk, tree planting area (whether in a park strip or behind the sidewalk), the curb and gutter, and the street itself are all within the public right-of-way. In the Municipal Code, it is the property owner who has maintenance responsibility for the street trees adjacent to their property, unless the trees are specifically designated for maintenance by the City of San José, such as trees in the areas highlighted below:
Click here for more information on Caring for Your Street Trees.
Special Districts are areas within the City of San José in which the property owners have voted to provide the funding through higher assessments for additional features, such as maintenance of the landscape, trees, trails, water features and other items of common interest. Please call (408) 794-1924 for information about Special
Median Islands and Roadside Landscape Maintenance Areas
Trees in the median islands or those in the roadside landscape maintenance areas (often called “backups” because these are areas along major arterial streets where subdivisions backup to the streets, leaving a narrow area for landscaping and trees) are maintained by crews or contractors from the Department of Transportation. To report a concern about these trees, call DOT Dispatch at (408) 794-1900.
Click here for permit request form