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More Information: Trees in the SNAD

Updated: May 5, 2021

This overview of Special Natural Area District (SNAD) regulations is provided for informational purposes only—the actual regulations are much more complex than this overview. Contact the Bronx Office of City Planning, at 718-220-8500, with your specific project plans and a description of your property, to ensure that you comply with all zoning requirements. City Planning will guide you through the approval and permitting process.

Healthy trees of 6" caliper or greater are protected in the SNAD. What is Caliper?

  • Caliper is the diameter of the tree trunk measured 4 feet 6 inches from the ground.

  • If the trunk splits below this height, the trunk is measured at its most narrow point below the split.

Healthy trees of 6" caliper or more may be removed only if (see Sect. 105-31, a-d):

  • The tree is located in areas to be occupied by your development project, or it is within a distance of 15 feet from the exterior walls of a building,

  • The continued presence of the tree would create special hazards or dangers to persons or property,

  • The tree will interfere with the growth or health of another tree that is designated for preservation, or

  • An authorization has been granted by the City Planning Commission approving its removal.

Trees that are removed may need to be replaced. The Department of City Planning will advise you of the number of trees you must plant to replace those you remove.

What about unhealthy trees? A tree of 6" caliper or greater that is dead, diseased, or imminently hazardous to property or persons may be removed without special review. When removing such a tree, you must obtain a letter from a certified arborist documenting the tree's condition and justifying its removal.

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