If you have lived in one of Australia's big cities and you hear the expression “leafy suburb” – for example, what may come to mind may include places like the northern suburbs of Sydney, Sutherland Shire, the eastern suburbs of Melbourne, the inner west suburbs of Brisbane, St Lucia, Bardon, Indooroopilly, The Gap and Ashgrove. All are desirable places to live and also fetch high prices.
What do they have in common? The extensive planting of street trees many years ago.
Parts of the Gold Coast, particularly subdivisions created since the late 1980s such as Robina, also exhibit similar characteristics with now well-established street scenes.
Real estate agents just know that a good streetscape works wonders for the value of a property. We call it ‘street appeal’ and it is not restricted to the garden - it's seeing how buyers feel when they stand out front and do a 360 before they walk up to the front door.
Lyndal Plant, a PhD candidate at the School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management at the University of Queensland recently completed a study of urban forestry research which reveals buyers paid 5% above the median price of houses in a street with 50% or more trees. Her study was based on sales in 2008 – 2010.
She also found that in addition to the property value benefits there were reduced costs to local government, increased rates revenue and increased stamp duty tax revenue. This was after allowing for the actual annual costs of planting, maintenance and insurance claims.
If you live in a street that doesn't have very many street trees what could you and your neighbours do? Firstly decide on a species that will look good and not cause problems as it grows to maturity, Council officers can help you with this. Next you might want to get together and have a tree planting day with your neighbours.
Residents, body corporates and schools can pick up trees from the City of Gold Coast nursery on particular days. The City's nursery is situated on Shelter Road at Coombabah. Operating hours for the nursery will be from 7.30am until 2pm on the allocated days. Residents will receive two (2) free trees per household.
When Can You Get Your Free Tree?
Residents - Thursdays (5 January 2017 to 25 May 2017)
An official document, such as a bill or driver’s license, showing your name and address must be shown to receive your free tree.
- January 5, 12 and 19
- February 2, 9, 16 and 23
- March 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30
- April 6, 13, 20 and 27
- May 4, 11, 18 and 25
Body corporates - Wednesdays (4 January 2017 to 31 May 2017)
Body corporate/unit complex managers should submit their request in writing on letterhead and include details of three ratepayers from their complex. Body corporate/unit complex managers will receive ten (10) free trees.
- January 4, 11, 18 and 25
- February 1, 8, 15 and 22
- March 1, 8, 15, 22 and 29
- April 5, 12, 19 and 26
- May 3, 10, 17, 24 and 31
Schools and community groups - Wednesday (all year)
Schools are eligible to receive 50 free trees. Numbers of free trees for community groups will be advised on application. All requests are to be submitted on letterhead, scanned and emailed to Parksfirstname.lastname@example.org or posted to:
Parks and Recreational Services
PO Box 5042
GOLD COAST MC QLD 9729