Trees around Parramatta
To enable the construction and operation of the Parramatta Light Rail, some trees along the planned Stage 1 route will be removed. The Parramatta Light Rail team has worked hard to assess these impacts and any removal of trees will be mitigated where possible in accordance with the Transport for NSW Vegetation Offset Guide (2016).

How many trees will be impacted?

Transport for NSW is committed to retaining or replacing trees wherever possible as part of the Parramatta Light Rail project. It is expected that between 1900 and 2650 trees could be removed as part of the project. The majority of these are not large and not rated ‘high retention value’.

Why are trees being removed?

Some trees must be removed to enable the construction and operation of the Parramatta Light Rail. Some trees are in the path of the planned light railnetwork or roads, and others require removal to enable associated construction work; for example, where excavation would significantly impact tree roots.Consideration of the potential to retain trees will form part of detailed design and construction planning.

Will these trees be replaced?

Transport for NSW is aiming to replace the trees at a ratio of between 2:1 and 8:1, depending on the size of the trees. As part of the urban design for Stage 1 of the Parramatta Light Rail, significant new street tree planting will take place. Transport for NSW is also working with the City of Parramatta Council to develop the Vegetation Offset Strategy, the aim of which is to improve biodiversity outcomes across the Parramatta local government area (LGA), offset amenity impacts and contribute to urban greening. Any removal of trees will be offset by a range of measures including the planting of new street trees, biodiversity plantings, landscaping and bushcare works.

What is happening to large fig trees along the route alignment?

As part of the Parramatta Light Rail project, it is likely that a cluster of fig trees within the Cumberland Hospital Campus East (at the corner of Bridge Road and Warrinya Avenue), North Parramatta, and three mature fig trees on the western boundary of Robin Thomas Reserve will need to be removed. Opportunities to retain trees will be explored wherever possible during the detailed design phase.

How is a tree’s ‘value’ determined?

‘Retention value’ is determined by an independent arborist using a combination of environmental, cultural, physical and social values. A value of ‘high’, ‘medium’ or ‘low’ is assigned to each tree, or group of trees, according to the Institute of Consulting Arboriculturalists (IACA) Significance of a Tree Assessment Rating System (STARS).

What is Transport for NSW doing to retain existing trees?

Transport for NSW will keep investigating how trees can be retained — in particular, those of medium to high retention value — which may mean modifying our design and construction techniques where necessary.

When would this take place?

Offset planting outside the project works area will take place, where possible, during construction. Any new landscaping that falls within the construction zone will take place in later stages of the project. The project team is collaborating with the City of Parramatta Council on the selection of tree species, size and planting locations.

Potential number of trees impacted

This table shows which trees, out of the expected number of trees that could be impacted, are considered “high retention value and/or large” or “low retention value”. More information about potential tree impacts can be found in the Parramatta Light Rail Environmental Impact Statement, with further information to be provided as detailed design and construction work is undertaken.