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

Colin Davidson won $100K on a Set for Life scratch ticket in Sooke. (BCLC photo)
Sooke man does ‘happy dance’ after scratching a $100,000 Set for Life win

Colin Davidson plans to renovate his home and invest in his daughter’s education

Law Enforcement Torch Run in support of Special Olympics B.C. kicks off with a run at Swan Lake on June 6. The virtual fundraiser runs until June 20. (Saanich Police/Twitter)
Torch run seeks to scorch previous fundraiser, targets $75,000 for Special Olympics

Global movement shoots for 40,000 km in honour of the 40th anniversary

West Shore RCMP K9 Halla. (Black Press Media file photo)
Sound of RCMP dog enough to stop suspects in Oak Bay

West Shore RCMP K9 unit called in, didn’t get to chase

Improving safety at Keating Cross Road and the Pat Bay Highway is the goal of the flyover project currently in the works. The province aims to reveal the final cost and design this fall. (Screencap/Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure)
Final budget, design of Keating flyover in Central Saanich still in the works

Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure says information coming by this fall

UVic Department of Anthropology chair and professor, April Nowell, at home with a copy of her new book, Growing Up In the Ice Age. (Courtesy of April Nowell)
New book by University of Victoria professor explores lives of Ice Age children

April Nowell spent two decades researching archaeological evidence of children, teens

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

Cowichan Tribes man Adrian Sylvester is worried that he was targetted by a trailer hitch thrown from a vehicle. (Facebook photo)
Cowichan Tribes man worried he was target of trailer hitch

Adrian Sylvester says no one has reported a missing hitch after one nearly hit him

Graeme Roberts, who was mayor of Nanaimo from 1984-86, died this month at age 89. (Photo courtesy Nanaimo Community Archives)
City of Nanaimo flags at half-mast as former mayor Graeme Roberts dies at 89

‘Giant-killer’ beat out Frank Ney in mayoral election in 1984

CVSAR search the Puntledge River following a report of an abandoned kayak. Photo, CVSAR Facebook page
Comox Valley Search and Rescue spends four hours searching for no one

Overturned kayak a reminder for public to contact officials if they have to abandon a watercraft

A worker, at left, tends to a customer at a cosmetics shop amid the COVID-19 pandemic Thursday, May 20, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Half of cosmetics sold in Canada, U.S. contain toxic chemicals: study

Researchers tested more than 230 commonly used cosmetics and found that 56% of foundations and eye products, 48% of lip products and 47% of mascaras contained high levels of fluorine

White Rock’s Marine Drive has been converted to one-way traffic to allow more patio space for waterfront restaurants. (Peace Arch News)
Province promotes permanent pub patios in B.C. post-pandemic plan

More than 2,000 temporary expansions from COVID-19 rules

Lake City Secondary School Williams Lake campus students Ethan Reid, from left, Brenden Higgins, Ty Oviatt, Kaleb Alphonse, Nathan Kendrick and Landon Brink with RCMP officers Const. Nicoll and Const. Stancec. (Photo submitted)
RCMP thank 6 teens for helping prevent forest fire in Williams Lake

The students came across fire in a wooded area and used the water they had to try and extinguish the flames

Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre has embarked on a fundraising campaign, seeking to raise $1 million for establishment of an independent urban Indigenous school. Pictured here, Tsawalk Learning Centre students at an Orange Shirt Day event in September. (Submitted photo)
Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre looks to raise $1 million for urban Indigenous school

Centre says independent school would be first of its kind in B.C.

There is an emergency shelter near the Golden Ears peaks. (Facebook/Special to The News)
Hiker fogged in on Golden Ears, spends 2 nights

Talon Helicopters, Ridge Meadows Search and Rescue bring him home Monday

Most Read