A new report shows Victoria’s urban forest grew by 45 hectares (111 acres) between 2013 and 2019. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)

A new report shows Victoria’s urban forest grew by 45 hectares (111 acres) between 2013 and 2019. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)

Victoria’s urban forest grew by the equivalent of 60 soccer fields in six years

Total tree canopy of nearly 1,400 acres covers 28 per cent of the city’s land area

Victoria’s urban forest is growing, according to a new report presented to city council Thursday.

Between 2013 and 2019, data shows, the city’s vegetation canopy increased by 111 acres or about 60 soccer fields. In 2019, trees covered 1,381 acres of public and private land, amounting to 28 per cent of Victoria’s land area.

“This analysis demonstrates we can continue to develop and grow as a city while also protecting and growing the urban forest necessary for public enjoyment and to address climate change and long-term resilience,” Mayor Lisa Helps said in a statement.

Canopy cover in other large B.C. cities is lower, with Kelowna reporting an estimated 16 per cent and Vancouver 23 per cent.

READ ALSO: RCMP arrest seven at Vancouver Island old-growth logging blockades Wednesday

In Victoria, there are approximately 150,000 trees, as well as shrubs and ground cover. Of that, roughly one quarter of the urban forest is managed by the city, while the remaining 75 per cent is on private and other public land.

The trees are tracked using light detection and ranging (LiDAR) laser technology, which scans the environment from the air and generates a three-dimensional representation of the overall canopy cover.

Last year, Victoria joined the United Nations Trees in Cities Challenge and increased its tree planting by 40 per cent, adding 535 new trees in parks and boulevards. Trees, the city says, play an important role in mitigating climate change and extreme weather by providing shade, a wind buffer and erosion management.

The 2013 and 2019 canopy cover maps can be viewed at maps.victoria.ca.

READ ALSO: Greater Victoria real estate sales holding steady


Do you have a story tip? Email: vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

City of VictoriaEnvironment

Just Posted

Black Press file photo
RCMP seek suspect in Vancouver Island-wide crime spree

Crimes stretched from Deep Bay to Qualicum, Ladysmith, Chemainus and Youbou

Jesse Roper tackles weeds in his garden to kick off the 2021 season of What’s In My Garden Man? (YouTube/Whats In My Garden)
VIDEO: Metchosin singer-songwriter Jesse Roper invites gardeners into his plot

What’s In My Garden, Man? kicks off with the poop on compost

Barriers to rental housing brought on by no-pet rules add stress to renters, says councillor. (Pixabay)
Saanich councillor wants to remove barriers to housing for pet owners

Motion calling for province to amend lease stipulations against pet ownership defeated in 5-4 vote

(Victoria Cool Aid Society/Facebook)
Victoria food drive aims to feed those also struggling with housing

Quadra Village furniture store hosting drive-thru event Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Karl and Stephanie Ann Johanson were thrilled to spot a pair of Sandhill Cranes in the Panama Flats this month, an unusual appearance for such birds. (Photo by Stephanie Ann Johanson)
WATCH: Sandhill cranes an unusual, joyful sight in Saanich parkland

The birds don’t often touch down in the south of the Island

A small pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass by close to shore in Campbell River June 16, 2021. Still capture from video courtesy of Kimberly Hart
VIDEO: Dolphin sunset captured from Vancouver Island shore

Spectacular setting for view of travelling pod of Pacific white-sided dolphins

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 charged, suspect at large in killings of B.C. brothers linked to gang activity: RCMP

Kamloops brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May on a remote Okanagan road

Albert Health Minister Tyler Shandro and Alberta Premier Jason Kenney unveil an opening sign after speaking about the Open for Summer Plan and next steps in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta 1st province in Canada to lift all COVID-19 public health restrictions

70.2% of eligible citizens 12 and older in the province have received a dose of the vaccine

Fraser Health registered nurse Ramn Manan draws a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe at a walk-up vaccination clinic at Bear Creek Park, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, May 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Honour our fathers’ with COVID-19 vaccine protection, B.C. urges

109 new cases Friday, 75 per cent of 12 and up immunized

Freighters have becomd abundant in the Trincomali Channel on the east side of Thetis Island.
Nanaimo ponders taking on waste from nearby anchored freighters

Vancouver-based Tymac petitioning the Regional District of Nanaimo to accept waste at its landfill

(Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Trutch Avenue in Chilliwack to be renamed to remove racist taint

New name to have Indigenous significance as Chilliwack takes new step toward reconciliation

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a joint news conference following the EU-Canada Summit, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday June 15, 2021. Trudeau says Canada is on track now to have 68 million doses delivered by the end of July, which is more than enough to fully vaccinate all 33.2 million Canadians over the age of 12. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine deliveries enough to fully vaccinate all eligible Canadians by end of July

Three in four eligible Canadians now have their first dose, nearly one in five fully vaccinated.

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases attributed to the highly contagious Delta variant grew in Canada this week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s public health agency reports spike in confirmed cases of Delta variant

More than 2,000 cases of the variant confirmed across all 10 provinces and in one territory

Most Read