Whitemarsh Township's ordinance (Chapter 55
) outlines special protection for all heritage trees located in both private and public property within the Township. Heritage Trees are links to the past that are special to the community because of their prominence as visual land marks, usefulness to wildlife habitat and their positive impact on property values.
A Heritage Tree as defined by the Township ordinance:
- Has a diameter breast height (DBH) greater than 40 inches or an age greater than 75 years OR
Additional Tree Care
- A specifically selected tree that is identified and considered worthy of preservation by the township because of unusual species, size, rarity, or historical significance
For safety reasons, property owners need to trim trees, shrubs, bushes and other plant life along the street to ensure that drivers have an unobstructed view of the road. State law requires overgrowth to be trimmed to avoid interfering with drivers' sight distances at intersections. In addition, the Shade Tree Ordinance requires an 11-foot clearance over roads to ensure the safe passageway of emergency equipment, a 9-foot clearance over sidewalks, and a clear sight triangle at intersection streets.
Residents are encouraged to take a good look at their properties in the spring and trim any overgrowth that may present a safety hazard.