A goal for the City of Annapolis is to protect the existing tree canopy. Trees provide many benefits in urban settings. They improve our air quality, increase our economic vitality, provide energy conservation, reduce storm water runoff, and provide shade. Large development areas within the City are often required to create a portion of the property as a conservation easement.
The easement is required to remain in a natural state. The Annapolis Conservancy Board administers and manages the conservation easements. Their goal is to preserve the environmentally sensitive land. Home Owners Associations (HOA) sometimes question what can and can not be done within this easement.
Disturbance of an Easement
Disturbance of this easement is not permitted. However, there are cases where trees that have been damaged or died and are in danger of falling and damaging structures. If this situation were to occur the following steps must be taken:
A member of the HOA contacts the City Environmentalist at 410-263-7946 to discuss requests for maintaining the easement.
The Environmentalist contacts the City liaison for the Conservancy Board.
If a great deal of work is requested a landscape plan must be Prepared by the HOA and then submitted to the City for review.
The Conservancy Board and Planning Zoning Department must approve the requests of the HOA prior to any work commencing.
If the landscape alterations occur within the Critical Area (within 1,000 feet of the Chesapeake Bay), critical area enforcement must be contacted.
The City Environmentalist will work closely with the HOA in order to complete the requests in a timely manner.