Chapel Hill considers itself a Town with in a park. The considerable amount of open space from its parks, thoroughfares and neighborhoods attracts potential residents and continues to keep long term citizens alike. Whether you are playing sports on our numerous athletic fields, strolling along our greenways or discovering our tree lined downtown, Parks Maintenance division provides a safe, attractive and stimulating atmosphere.
Currently Chapel Hill is in the process of significant residential and retail growth while adapting to constantly changing economic factors. Because of this growth, Parks and Recreation plays an important role in maintaining its town/village feel that defines Chapel Hill. The Town has placed a high priority on protecting, connecting and maintaining its parks and green spaces while trying to acquire new land for recreational activities for a growing and diverse populace.
Park Maintenance takes pride in maintaining the Town’s thirteen parks, open spaces, downtown environs, four cemeteries, twenty-two playgrounds, nine parking lots, twenty-seven facilities and miles of trails, greenways, roadside and sidewalks. In addition to basic grounds maintenance, our staff has a wide variety of specialized training in athletic turf management, arboreal culture, landscape architecture and playground inspection. Regardless of location or function, Town staff thrives to keep all of our areas clean, safe, attractive and inviting.
Chapel Hill has a unique pride in the abundance and diversity of trees in its urban forest. Our residents have had a long loveaffair with trees dating back to 1889 when the Town passed its first tree ordinance. In the 1930’s the Town began its first tree planting program by installing willow oak trees along Franklin Street in the downtown area and around the historic district. In the 1980’s, in response to a long history of tree activism, the Town began taking further steps in protecting trees by hiring staff with training in arboricultural and passing new ordinances. In the 1990’s the Town began formally celebrating Arbor Day, joined the Arbor Day Foundation and became a member of Tree City USA.
Chapel Hill has made sure that it keeps a balance between new urban growth and small rural town feel by planting and maintaining trees in its public areas and main thoroughfares. As our trees have grown and matured, so has the enthusiasm the citizens have shown for the green arches down town, the hidden village feel of our neighborhoods and the “hug” one feels when walking under their majestic arms. In order to maintain the urban forest in Chapel Hill, the Town has a highly trained, educated and experienced staff. Over the years activism and actuality have come to an accommodation through acknowledgement of public concerns through outreach, the sharing of forestry research, providing town wide educational programs and professional service. Individual and community outreach has helped to ease the public’s difficulties with tree maintenance while collaboration with utilities in a “right tree- right place” philosophy has solved many conflicts. The Town also continues to update its legal standing concerning canopy loss/reduction ordinances, tree replacement guidelines and tree protection policies.
Tanner's responsibilities include overseeing the maintenance of the Town Right of Ways, Downtown’s Outdoor Appearance and Town Trees.
Pruning and cut backs of vegetation that may interfere with vehicular, pedestrian or bicycle traffic (e.g. sight line issue at intersections, town maintained curbs, roadsides, streets, sidewalks, tree growth covering street light and signs)
Assisting and overseeing the Town Arborist, Asst. Town Arborist, Groundskeeper and Downtown crew (collection and removal of waste/debris along the sidewalk and alleyways)
Tree Management plan: Tree Health Assessments, Ascertain Ownership (removal and replacement)
Debra is responsible for managing the town cemeteries (respond to a request involving the location, sale, and staking of cemetery plots and monuments placements) and administrative support for Park Maintenance Division.
Cemeteries: Old Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill Memorial, Barbee-HargraveandWest Chapel Hill