Casey Trees Buzzard Point Park Comments

August 12, 2016

Tammy Stidham
Chief of Planning, Compliance and Geographic Information Systems
National Park Service National Capital Region
1100 Ohio Drive SW
Washington, DC 20242

Re: Buzzard Point Park Redevelopment

Dear Ms. Stidham,

Casey Trees is a Washington, DC-based nonprofit, with a mission “to restore, enhance, and protect the
tree canopy of the nation’s capital.” To fulfill this mission, we plant trees; monitor the city’s tree canopy;
and work with local decision-makers, developers, and residents to prioritize the District’s trees. We are
committed to the District achieving its 40 percent tree canopy goal, and excited to comment on Buzzard
Point Park.

The redesign of Buzzard Point Park is tremendous opportunity to transform underused riverfront
property into a neighborhood treasure residents will enjoy for generations. The site’s secluded location
alongside the Anacostia River lends itself to a serene forested park for community gatherings and a mix
of active and passive recreation. Maximizing tree canopy in the park will also help reduce stormwater
pollution flowing into the river and mitigate other environmental concerns raised in the Buzzard Point
Urban Design Framework.

To achieve the Framework’s key targets and boost Ward 6’s tree canopy, the District’s lowest at 17%, we
suggest incorporating the following recommendations into the design for Buzzard Point Park:

  1. Adopt a 100% tree canopy goal: Large trees do more than look beautiful. They absorb
    stormwater, improve air quality, and help keep the District cooler. Trees also provide important
    habitats for DC’s diverse ecosystems.
  2. Plant new trees and protect existing trees: Maintain existing healthy trees and plant urban hardy,
    water-loving trees at Buzzard Point Park. Prioritize large shade trees to maximize
    environmental benefits. Consider working with Casey Trees to establish a planting plan or
    reference our Urban Tree Selection Guide to identify native trees ideal for this space.
  3. Require a maintenance plan: Regularly scheduled maintenance and tree health monitoring will
    improve the likelihood of young trees surviving and reduce the need for costly maintenance in
    the future. Ensure that trees less than 3 years old receive at least 25 gallons of water or 1.5
    inches of rainfall per week to give them the best chance to survive.

Thank you for the opportunity to comment. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at
ktaddei@caseytrees.org or 202-349-1892.

Sincerely,
Kristin D. Taddei
Planning Advocate

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