Originally Posted by SHOFEAR
Within lots or within MR and other open spaces? Wait, Were these old barracks where the site was cleared years ago and graded....Thats entirely different than maintaining a forest in peoples yards.
Cool. Then show me a natually forested area where run off sheet flows perpendicular to roads (you cant have run off from ones persons yards enter their neighbours) at just enough of a slope to allow drainage but not to much where it becomes akward to establish first floor elevations that work properly in both the front and rear of the housing pocket, and where the forest along these road ROWS grades nicely to allow any major run off to flow into neighbourhood storm pond....
One solution is to use tree wells. That allows the grading to be changed (usually raised) around the trees without damaging them. The wells can even be used as part of the stormwater management system.
But before doing any of that, the first step would be to plot out where all the major or desirable trees are and then carry out the planning accordingly. Trees can be retained in all sorts of places, not just yards. They can be retained in boulevards, medians and roundabouts. With all the curly roads that developers love these days, leaving behind little odd bits of land here and there for trees is another possibility.
Developers circle jerk over ammenity lots, especially when they can set aside their required park space and use existing natural features....it costs them nothing and they get a sweet premium. If it was feasible to encorporate existing trees into new subdivisions they would.
but hey, what do i know.
Developers don't do it because of any or all of the following: not required to, expense, lack of vision, lack of knowledge that it can be done at all (the average developer is shockingly ignorant about plenty of things), too much hassle (it requires extra planning and care before and during development, as well as restricting the operation of heavy equipment), etc.
Some of the early subdivisions of Kanata west of Ottawa were built in a way that retained extensive tree cover because the developer actually had some vision. Not only did they do this for detached houses, they even did it for townhouses too. They somehow managed to accomplish this in rolling topography - and without the benefit of using tree wells. In some places, they - gasp - left outcrops of Canadian Shield behind too! As a result, some houses didn't even get front lawns! They had to make do with woodland gardens. The Horror!