State To Pay To Plant Thousands Of Trees In Poor Springfield Neighborhoods

Jan 28, 2018

Springfield is the 14th participant in the Massachusetts "Greening the Gateway Cities" tree planting program. Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno, speaking at the podium, said the new trees will enhance the quality of life, improve the environment, and lower energy bills.
Credit WAMC

The Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources has awarded the city of Springfield $1.5 million to plant 2,500 trees. 

The trees will be planted over the next three years on both private and public property in three inner-city neighborhoods. 

Alex Sherman of the city’s Forestry Division said the neighborhoods chosen for the program have just 13 percent of the ground area covered by a tree canopy.

"The U.S. Forest Service uses 40 percent as ideal for an urban area, so obviously we are below that and we want to boost those numbers," said Sherman.

The state’s “Greening the Gateway Cities” tree planting program began several years ago after an insect infestation killed hundreds of trees in Worcester. 

More than 8,000 trees have been planted in 13 cities.