Urban Tree Strategy

Will trees removed be replaced?

Yes. While it is always sad to see trees removed, we are developing an urban tree strategy that will see a 5:1 replacement plan implemented to ensure there is carbon balance in the area. Many poplar trees in Centennial Park are at their end of life and have become a threat to make room for the dike. The removed trees will be replaced with new trees and/or bushes that are appropriate for the natural habitation. The 5:1 replacement plan ensures both carbon balance as well as limited impact on Drumheller’s wildlife community.

Why are trees being removed along Riverside Drive?

The lift station along Riverside Drive is at high risk of flooding and needs to be raised. The tree clearing is necessary for this work to be completed.

Tree clearing can proceed under the Migratory Bird Act as long as nests are not disturbed. This is determined by a qualified professional. 

A wildlife survey (Pre-Construction Wildlife Survey) was conducted by a qualified professional and determined there were no active nests in the area and within 100m of the area prior to the start of tree clearing. Monitoring will continue until completion.

Trees removed during this project will be replaced at 5:1 with appropriate trees and/or bush species. 

Can you remove trees during migratory bird season?

Yes. Construction work and tree removal are allowed during migratory bird season as long as a qualified professional conducts a field wildlife survey to confirm there is no nesting in the area to be disturbed and that wildlife is protected.
Two wildlife surveys were conducted prior to tree removal along Riverside Drive in the spring of 2021. The first was on May 3, 2021, and the second following the contractor pause on May 16, 2021. Both surveys confirmed that there were no active nests. It is recommended that tree and shrub removal be completed within five days or sooner to ensure no new breeding bird activity establishes. This will ensure compliance with the Migratory Birds Convention Act, the Species at Risk Act, and the Alberta Wildlife Act (GOC 1994, GOC 2002, GOA 2015). 

Many of the shrubs and trees are being left on site. This will create new habitat for nesting birds. 

What measures are in place for protection of the greenbelt, in particular, the natural native poplar trees?

Unfortunately, some trees will need to be removed to facilitate construction. Tree inventories and assessment are completed during design and a 5:1 tree replacement strategy is being implemented.