The City of Berkeley Lake is committed to tree preservation and regulates tree removal on all properties throughout the city in accordance with the requirements of Chapter 42, Article VII.
Prior to removing a non-exempt tree, a written permit must be obtained from city staff. Failure to obtain a permit prior to removing non-exempted trees shall result in the issuance of a citation and summons to appear in municipal court.
Tree Removal on Residential Lots
The city regulates tree removal on single-family residential lots by requiring a property owner to obtain a permit prior to removing non-exempted trees. A permit is required so that the city can ensure that the property complies with the minimum tree density standard of 40 tree density units (TDU) per acre. Any healthy trees removed from a developed residential lot must be replaced with their equivalent tree density unit value. Specimen trees must be replaced with twice their TDU value.
The permit application must be accompanied by a tree replacement plan. There are three methods by which trees may be replaced: planting on the same property from which trees were removed; planting on a city-approved alternate site; and payment to the city tree fund of $400 per TDU for trees that cannot be replaced by planting.
With a few exceptions, homeowners desiring to remove healthy trees should submit a completed Application for Tree Removal Permit
to city hall staff. The fee for a tree removal permit application is $50.00. Once a tree removal permit is issued it is valid for 90 days. Failure to have trees removed within 90 days will result in the need to obtain a new tree removal permit prior to tree removal.
- Removal of trees on individual, residential lots greater than five acres, subject to compliance with all other applicable provisions of Chapter 42.
- Removal of 2 trees, other than a specimen tree as defined by Section 42-270, per calendar year on individual residential lots of five acres or less, subject to compliance with all other applicable provisions of Chapter 42.
- Removal of any tree felled or uprooted by natural causes.
- Removal of any tree that has been inspected by an ISA Certified Arborist or Registered Consulting Arborist and determined in a written report, retained by the property owner, to be dead or dying due to disease or injury or dangerous to persons or property.
- Tree removal for non-development activity on non-residential lots.
- Removal of any tree included in the list of non-native invasive plants as established by the Georgia Exotic Pest Plant Council, including but not limited to Princess Tree (Paulownia tomentosa), Mimosa (Albrizia julibrissin), Tree-of-Heaven (Ailanthus altissima), Tallow Tree (Triadica sebifera) and Bradford Pear (Pyrus calleryana).
- Removal of ornamental and screening varieties: Crape Myrtle (genus Lagerstroemia), Leyland Cypress (Cupressocyparis Leylandii), Arborvitae (genus Thuja) and Japanese Cedar (Cryptomeria japonica), subject to compliance with all other applicable provisions of this chapter.
- Removal of ornamental or edible non-native varieties of fruits such as cherry, apricot, plum, peach, apple, pear and persimmon but excluding native, wild varieties, subject to compliance with all other applicable provisions of this chapter.
- Removal of trees, the trunk of which (at DBH measurement) is wholly or partially within a distance of 10 feet to a structure such as a dwelling, accessory building, swimming pool, retaining wall, driveway, walkway or public infrastructure, subject to compliance with all other applicable provisions of this chapter.
4040 S. Berkeley Lake Rd.
Berkeley Lake, GA 30096
Ph: (770) 368 9484
Monday - Thursday
11:00AM - 4:00PM