About the Project

Bass Coast Shire Council is developing its very first Draft Urban Forest Strategy to plan how we will continue to grow and look after our urban forest. The urban forest comprises all of the trees and other vegetation in our urban area. It includes street and park trees but also trees and vegetation in backyards, along waterways, in industrial areas, and in conservation areas. Everyone can help grow our urban forest, and enjoy the many benefits trees and shrubs provide

The Strategy has been informed by a range of stakeholder consultation and will drive improvements to help ensure we grow a healthy, green and resilient urban forest that is well managed, protected and provides maximum benefits to our community.

We encourage you to provide feedback on our draft approach to managing our urban forest by completing the survey below. The survey will be open until 20th February. There will be additional opportunities to contribute through community group submissions.

The Bass Coast Urban Forest today

Our townships have an average of 30% urban forest cover (trees and shrubs) on public land, but only 21% on private land. Research shows that 40% is considered optimal. So, while Council will focus on protecting our existing vegetation cover and improving connectivity by planting along streets and in parks, our private land (residential gardens and commercial precincts) also plays a critical role in nurturing our urban forests.

What did our community say?

Our community

  • want more trees planted across Bass Coast townships, predominantly in new developments, in parks, on nature strips, around sports grounds and along main shopping strips
  • support Council investing in more public street and park trees
  • recognise the importance of trees on private property
  • think Council should require greater regulatory protection over them and would support Council developing incentives for tree protection and planting on private property

What are we aiming to achieve?

Our Strategy sets the framework for Council, developers and our community to:

  • PROTECT our urban forest
  • GROW our urban forest
  • EMPOWER our community and other land holders to protect and grow the urban forest on their land
  • EMBED best practice urban forest principles into our everyday work.

By prioritising our investment towards the most beneficial and equitable outcomes while collaborating with our community, developers and service providers we will also achieve two key targets by 2040:

  • No net loss of vegetation on private residential land and
  • Urban forest cover will increase to an average of 40% across public land in our townships

To provide your feedback, please complete the survey above, drop in a submission to one of our customer service centres or email basscoast@basscoast.vic.gov.au with Urban Forest Strategy feedback in the subject line.