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District Department of Transportation

DDOT Public Space Tree Permit

Anyone, whether resident or contractor, who plants, prunes or removes a public street tree within the public right of way must first obtain permission from DDOT's Urban Forestry Division (UFD).

  1. Submit your permit request through the Transportation Online Permitting System (TOPS) on the web or go to the Public Space Permit Office and use one of the kiosks located in the hall on the second floor adjacent to the permit office, which is located at the following:

District Department of Transportation
Planning and Sustainability Division
Public Space Permit Branch
1100 4th Street SW
Washington, DC 20024

8:30 am to 4:15 pm on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday
9:30 am to 4:30 pm on Thursday

  1. Once UFD has received notice of the permit application, it is assigned to the appropriate arborist who will review submitted site plans and other materials and may schedule a site visit to verify the extent of the type of work requested.

The assigned arborist will make the necessary decisions regarding the application.

Note: The Urban Forestry Division reserves the right to deny any and all public space permits that relate to or impact public trees.

Please be aware of the following permitting requirements:

  • All pruning of public trees should follow current ISA ANSI Z133.1 Safety Standards for Pruning.
  • Installing electrical conduits, outlets, and/or junction boxes within tree box spaces is not permitted by UFA due to negative impacts on tree health, public safety, and long-term tree removal and tree replacement issues. Installing electrical systems requires a Public Space ‘electrical wiring’ permit (available through the Permits Office kiosk) and is subject to UFA review and discretion.
  • Public Space Permits will require a traffic control plan.

Attention: Before any digging occurs, you should take the appropriate actions to avoid injury or utility conflicts. Call MISS UTILITY at (800) 257-7777 before any excavation.

Service Need

Street tree permits are required for people who plant, prune or remove a public street tree within the public right of way to ensure the work is done safely and correctly.

Service at a Glance

Provided By: DDOT
Phone: (202) 671-5133
Location: 1100 4th Street, SW, Washington, DC 20024

Related OSHA Safety Standards

  • Z133.1 Safety Standard, 2006: Personal Protective Equipment and Electrical Safety
  • Z133.1 Safety Standard, 2006: Using Cranes Safely
  • Z133.1 Safety Standard, 2006: Chain-Saw, Climbing, Pruning, Rigging, and Removal

Related Document

Street Tree vs. Special Tree

Related Information