Blythewood Town Council Updated on Tree Ordinance Revisions

Town Council was updated on the revisions being made to the Town’s tree and landscape ordinance by landscape architect Rick McMakin of LandPlan Group South at Monday night’s Council meeting.

McMakin explained to Council some of the changes that include adding a table of contents to the ordinance.

The new ordinance, McMakin said, would no longer allow plans to be drawn on a napkin but would require plans for development projects.

“It will now include a preferred plant materials list,” McMakin said, “as well as encourage multiple varieties of plantings in a landscape. Replacement trees will be required to be a minimum of 2-inch caliber, and there’ll be other verbiage intended to protect specimen and heritage trees (trees greater than 30-inches in diameter).”

McMakin said a tree survey will be required for all trees over 8-inches in diameter for all development projects.

In addition, the ordinance is being amended to reflect the S.C. Attorney General’s recent opinion that prohibits the Town government from interfering in any way with forestry clear-cutting that qualifies as tree farming.

The opinion further stated that a town or county could not require qualifying forestry activities to comply with S.C. Best Management Practices, buffering of the project or other guidelines such as requiring notification or permits or regulating the use of public roads by trucks (associated with the tree cutting) that might damage the roads.

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