New by-law concerning tree felling

By-law 1494, which came into effect May 2, 2016, modified the requirement for the felling of trees. It is prohibited to fell or pull up any tree located on private property within the territory of the city of Westmount without having first obtained a certificate of authorization for this purpose.

The City may issue a certificate of authorization in the following circumstances:

  • the tree is dead or in a state of irreversible blight, with more than 50% of the crown consisting of dead wood;
  • the tree is within the building site or within 3 metres of the building site of a projected
    structure or retaining wall;
  • the tree is located within the building site of a swimming pool or, in the case of the front yard, within the building site of accessory parking or means of access to a building, but only if no other area is available elsewhere on the parcel of land for such construction;
  • based on a certified arboriculturist’s study, the tree is likely to spread a disease or is an exotic invasive species and accordingly, must be replaced;
  • based on a certified arboriculturalist’s study, serious damage to property is caused by the tree due to an irreversible situation resulting from a disease or structural deficiency affecting its solidity.

In all cases, the applicant must justify the request. If the tree is not more than 10 cm (4 in.) in diameter, when measured at a height of 1.5 m (5 ft.) from the ground, an authorization is not required.

The property owner is responsible for the disposal of the branches and trunk of a felled tree.

For a list of permitted tree species for planting or replacement, please consult the list of authorized trees.