Free trees on New Haven streets, no installation required

New Haven

Homeowners and business owners in New Haven, do I have a deal for you. If you act right now, you can get a brand new, 100% natural tree, installed for you in front of your home or business.

Got a piece of sidewalk? Want a tree? The Urban Resources Initiative will give you one. They’ll even install it for you.

“If there’s no tree pit in front of your house, we will come and cut the concrete, pull it out and make a place,” explained Colleen Murphy-Dunning, director of the Urban Resources Initiative, or URI. “Like in this case here, it wasn’t big enough, so we cut the concrete in this location to make more space for the tree to grow.”

She was standing next to a patch of dirt on the sidewalk of Chapel Street by Shake Shack where URI is about to plant a tree. They’ve been working to make the City of New Haven greener for years. The city pays for the trees. Private donations and foundations pay for URI’s crew, which comes from Emerge, a non-profit that employs former convicts.

“I think planting trees is giving people more opportunities for jobs and learn different skills,” said Willliam Tisdale, a URI Field Crew Representative. He came to URI from Emerge. Anyone can apply for a tree as long as they agree to give it lots of water. You can even pick the kind of tree you want.

“It’s really important because it brings down air temperatures, it improves air quality, and it brings shade and beauty for our residents,” Murphy-Dunning said. “It really improves the quality of our environment in general.”

Trees make all kinds of animals happy, and the shade is especially welcome during these hot summer days. Planting all those trees gives jobs to people who need them, as well as sense of pride in adding some beauty to the city.

“Myself I always go around telling my family, I planted this tree, I planted that tree,” said Tisdale. “It’s good, something good and positive.”

The fall planting season starts in a couple of weeks, so you’re going to want to get those requests in now. You can either call 203-432-6189, or you can go fill out an online form by clicking here.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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