Trees and shrubs

It is permitted to plant trees and shrubs on private properties. However, to plant trees or shrubs on the city's right-of-way, written authorization is required from the Direction des travaux publics. This authorization must specify the location and species of trees or shrubs to be planted.

Note that the following information is only a summary of the official by-law. Consult the full by-law for your borough:

Tree preservation

Protecting the critical root area during work

Anyone doing construction, renovation, transformation, backfilling, excavation, or demolition work on a building, structure, or piece of equipment and who is required to preserve trees in the vicinity must erect a perimeter fence around each of the trees in question.

Trimming, topping, and pruning

The following conditions apply to tree trimming, topping, and pruning:

  • the natural shape of the tree must be preserved;
  • at least 80% of the total volume of branches must be preserved, according to the following sketch:


This standard does not apply to hedges and shrubs.

When trees in the right-of-way need to be trimmed or if they were damaged by wind, freezing rain, or snow, you must contact the Direction des travaux publics. A tree pruner will perform the necessary work.

Tree planting

General standards

Trees must be planted and maintained according to the standards in the following table:

Use Trees per square metre of surface area Subtract surface area of impervious outdoor parking spaces required by the by-law Subtract surface area of impervious outdoor parking spaces* Subtract surface area of main building coverage
H – 6 units or less 1/125 yes yes yes
H – more than 6 units 1/125 no yes yes
C 1/125 no yes yes
I 1/125 no yes yes
P 1/125 no yes yes
A 1/125** yes yes yes

*Outdoor parking with runoff coefficient not exceeding 0.7.
**Only surface area used for habitation purposes is considered.

Planting of large trees

Large trees must be planted and maintained at least every 8 linear metres:

  • on a property bordering a street, footpath, or park, in a straight line;
  • around a parking lot with eight or more spaces.

Tree felling

General rule

Tree felling is prohibited throughout the territory, except in the following circumstances:

  • The tree is dead;
  • The tree represents a danger to residents' health and safety;
  • The tree is likely to cause problems;
  • The tree is infected with a disease or insect;
  • The tree is a hindrance to the construction of public utility structures or other infrastructures, and there is no other solution;
  • The tree is a hindrance to the performance of construction work, and there is no other solution;
  • In the case of a construction or main building expansion project, the tree is located within a certain perimeter.

Felling and trimming of ash trees

Pursuant to by-law CO-2015-905, the felling and trimming of ash trees is prohibited between March 15 and October 1, unless the tree represents a danger to persons or property. Ash trees may also be cut down as part of a construction project, subject to certain conditions. For more information, visit the page on the emerald ash borer.

For additional information, contact the Direction de l'aménagement et de l'urbanisme.