Trees & Greenspace
Trees and greenspace have significant environmental, economic, and social benefits. These include improving air and water quality, providing natural stormwater management and soil protection, and attracting people to local business districts and community spaces. Numerous studies have demonstrated that the presence of trees and urban nature can improve people's mental and physical health, children's attention and test scores, and property values in a neighborhood. Trees cool our urban centers and are essential for healthy communities and healthy people.
Norcross has been a Tree City USA affiliate since 2004. In Norcross, tree canopy coverage is 38 percent, compared to the national average of only 27.1 percent in major U.S. cities, and 99 percent of Norcross residents live within one half-mile of parks or greenspace. Norcross’ Community Development Department follows a strict “No Net Loss of Trees” policy and ordinance that requires a developing site to maintain tree canopy coverage or compensate by paying the city for the number of trees that cannot be replaced to allow the city to plant trees elsewhere.
Norcross’ farmers market and community garden are other important initiatives. Established in 2016, the Norcross Community Market is a seasonal, open-air, producer-only farmers and artisans market creating community around food. Plots in the Discovery Garden Park community garden are rented yearly for a small fee and gardeners are required to grow organically. Contact the Discovery Garden Park Board at firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire about renting a plot.
The City of Norcross is certified under the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) Green Communities program and is one of only several Platinum-level Green Communities in metro Atlanta. Below, see how Norcross is doing on completing ARC Green Communities measures around trees and greenspace:
|No Net Loss of Trees Policy||95||10||Yes|
|Tree City USA||106||5||Yes|
|Parking Lot Canopy Requirements||110||5||Yes|
|Forest Master Plan||115||5||No|
|Gardens & Orchards||116||5||Yes|
|Local Food Systems Plan||126||5||No|