January 23 2015 Urban Forestry Council Meeting Approved Minutes


Friday, January 23, 2015, 8:30 a.m.

City Hall, Room 400
One Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Jr. Place
San Francisco, CA 94102

Council Members: Dan Flanagan (Chair), Carla Short (Vice Chair) (Department of Public Works), Ana Alvarez (San Francisco Recreation and Park Department), Malcolm Hillan, Rose Hillson, Dan Kida, John Leffingwell, Yolanda Manzone, (San Francisco Public Utilities Commission), Sandy Sherwin, Andrew Sullivan, Michael Sullivan, and Jon Swae (San Francisco Planning Department); San Francisco Port (Vacant); and Golden Gate National Recreation Area (Vacant).

Order of Business

1. Call to Order and Roll Call. The Urban Forestry Council meeting convened at 8:55 a.m.  Present:  Acting Chair Short, Hillson, Kida, Leffingwell, Manzone, Sherwin, A. Sullivan (8:55 a.m.), and M. Sullivan; Excused:  Members Alvarez, Flanagan, Hillan, and Swae.

2. Adoption of Minutes of the December 12, 2014 Urban Forestry Council Regular Meeting. (Explanatory Document:   December 12, 2014 Draft Minutes) (Discussion and Action) Upon Motion by Council Member Hillson, second by Member Sherwin, the December 12, 2014 Meeting Minutes were approved (AYES:  Members Short, Hillson, Kida, Leffingwell, Manzone, Sherwin, A. Sullivan and M. Sullivan; NOES:  None; Absent:  Members Alvarez, Hillan and Swae).

Public Comment:  Ms. Dee Seligman provided the following comments on the December 12, 2014 Meeting Minutes:

“The following information was omitted in the summary of the December 12, 2014 presentation by Lisa Wayne, Manager of San Francisco’s Natural Areas Program, to the Urban Forestry Council in the minutes of the December 12th meeting.  I request that my public comment be added to the minutes of the January 23, 2015 Urban Forestry Council.

Ms. Wayne had stated: “SNRAMP is trying to achieve a final state in the MA1 and MA 2 areas that look like this” [referencing 50- 100 square foot basal area as the ideal], but “there are some places, like in Mt. Davidson, where we’ve already achieved that final state and no further tree removal would be required in those areas.”
However, SNRAMP’s Appendix F (pp. F-11 and F-14), its Urban Forestry Appendix, which spells out in detail its forest management practices, indicates that Mt. Davidson’s MA-1c area of about 3.5 acres will have 1000 trees (82%) to be removed. Why did Ms. Wayne indicate that RPD has already achieved its goal at Mt. Davidson before the EIR has been certified? Have they already engaged in tree removal?  Or if not, why did she forget or overlook this important and controversial element of their Mt. Davidson plan?”
3. Public Comment:  Members of the public may address the Council on matters that are within the Council’s jurisdiction and are not on today’s agenda.  There was no public comment at this time.

4. Better Market Street Project.  The Council will hear a presentation on the Better Market Street project.  (Explanatory Document:  Better Market Street Project Update Presentation) (Continued from the December 12, 2014 Meeting) Presenter: Simon Bertrang, Project Manager, Better Market Street Project (Informational Presentation and Discussion)

Project Manager Simon Bertrang presented an update on the Better Market Street Project plan discussing the City’s goals and planned pedestrian, bicycling and transit improvements, project area limits, project schedule, Market Street considerations, and the objective to create a synergy between transport and place.  He reported that three alternatives are being studied in environmental review with substantial improvements to safety, accessibility, pedestrian conditions, cycling facility, transit service and stops, and invitations for street life.  Mr. Bertrang reported on projected jobs and housing growth by 2035 and the central role of Market Street in connecting existing and future transit modes and projected growth in employment and housing.  Additional presentation topics included proposed private vehicle restrictions, analysis of collision trends and traffic volumes, project funding sources, and the six districts comprising Market Street. Instructions for submitting formal comments on the scope of the project are located on SFMTA’s and the Planning Department websites.  (Reference Presentation)

Mr. Bertrang reported on the necessity to remove trees as part of the project and discussed with Council Members what the future of the urban forest on Market Street should be.  Topics of discussion with Council Members included street tree selection, bicycle safety, tree species selection and planting considerations for a healthy urban forest, infrastructure design elements, project alternatives, decrease of carbon sequestration from removal of trees, coordination with the Van Ness Bus Rapid Transit project, and engagement with businesses about the presence of trees.  A request was made to engage the Urban Forestry Council on the project tree selection process. 

5. Treasure Island Streetscape Master Plan.  The Urban Forestry Council will hear a presentation on the Streetscape Master Plan for Treasure Island. (Explanatory Documents:  Presentation and Treasure Island and Yerba Buena Island Streetscape Master Plan) Presenter: Pamela Conrad, Landscape Architect, CMG Landscape Architecture (Informational Presentation and Discussion)

Mr. Bob Beck, Treasure Island Development Authority (TIDA), reported that TIDA is working with Treasure Island Community Development, the private partner of the development program at Treasure Island, and that CMG has done the work to develop the Streetscape Master Plan.  Landscape Architect for CMG, Pamela Conrad, presented on the Treasure Island and Yerba Buena Island Streetscape Master Plan project schedule and City review process, project overview, and tree species recommendations for the project.  (Reference Presentation)

Council members inquired about planned tree maintenance, provided recommendations for tree species, and discussed design elements.  Mr. Beck reported that the intention is to establish a Community Facilities District over the Island and for Treasure Island Development Authority in the future to be responsible for the open space and tree maintenance on the Island.  A request was made to provide presentations to the Council on future open space and tree species plans.

Public Comment:  Anonymous speaker discussed the negative aspects of Ginkgo trees especially during the fall and winter months when the leaves drop and become slippery.   It was suggested that the pollen content of trees be considered to take into account asthma sufferers.  Anonymous speaker suggested taking into account the effects the wind on Treasure Island would have on trees, sea level rise, and huge amounts of dirt that is brought from the Central Subway and Caldecott Tunnel and how it mixes with soil content. 
6. Review and Approval of Draft Resolution File 2015-01-UFC to amend Article VIII – Committees, Sections 4, 5 and 7 to change the composition of the Urban Forestry Council Planning and Policy Committee and Funding Committee. (Explanatory Documents:  Draft Resolution and Notice of Proposed Bylaws Amendment)  Sponsor:  Chair Dan Flanagan; (Discussion and Action)

Acting Chair Short reported on amendments to reunite the Planning and Funding Committees and the possibility of increasing membership.  Council members held a discussion about the proposed amendments to the Bylaws.  A discussion was held about the possibility of a schedule change for the Planning and Funding and Landmark Tree Ad Hoc Committees to meet on the same day back to back; however, no action was taken.  Upon Motion by Member Michael Sullivan, second by Member Hillson, Resolution 001-15-UFC was approved without objection (AYES:  Members Short, Hillson, Kida, Leffingwell, Manzone, Sherwin, A. Sullivan and M. Sullivan; NOES:  None; Absent:  Members Alvarez, Hillan and Swae).

7. Committee Reports: (Informational Reports and Discussion)
Planning & Policy Committee. Chair’s Report.  Committee Chair Sullivan reported that the Committee at its last meeting worked on the Best Management Practices outline and will be reviewing an updated document to discuss and recommend to the full Council.  Member Leffingwell requested comments from Council Members to include in the Best Management Practices draft. 
Funding Committee.  Chair’s Report.  No report was issued.
Landmark Tree Ad Hoc Committee.  Chair’s Report.   Committee Chair Hillson reported that no landmark tree nomination applications were received.

8. Staff Report. (Informational Report and Discussion)  There was no staff report at this time.

9. Chair’s Announcements: Chair, Urban Forestry Council (Information and Discussion)  Acting Chair Short reported that the Urban Forest Plan Phase 1 Street Trees is scheduled before the Board of Supervisors Land Use Committee on January 26th at 1:30 p.m., Room  263, and that she and Member Swae will be presenting.  She announced that Arbor Day is scheduled for March 14th and asked the Council if they would like to participate formally, as planning is getting underway for the event. 

10. Urban Forestry Council Member Announcements. (Information and Discussion)  Member Hillson announced that there has been discussion by the Rosa Parks School about the feasibility of moving the Rosa Parks tree to that location.  This issue was discussed during the Van Ness BRT street tree species selection meeting.  Member Sherwin announced that Thursday, January 29th is when the tree selection is being presented to the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency for the Van Ness bus line at the 1 South Van Ness Avenue office.   She inquired about the schedule for the Department’s budget presentation hearing to the Commission so that interested Council members could attend.  Commission Secretary Monica Fish reported that the Commission’s Operations Committee held a meeting on January 21 to recommend approval of the draft budget to the Commission for consideration at its January 27, 5:00 p.m. meeting.  She announced that there would also be a presentation by the Mayor’s Office on the budget forecast. 

11. New Business/Future Agenda Items. (Information and Discussion)  There was no new business/future agenda items discussed at this time.

12. Public Comment:  Members of the public may address the Council on matters that are within the Council’s jurisdiction and are not on today’s agenda.  There was no public comment at this time.

13. Adjournment.  The Urban Forestry Council meeting adjourned at 10:37 a.m.

The next meeting of the Urban Forestry Council is scheduled for Tuesday, February 24, 2015 at 6:00 p.m., City Hall, Room 416, San Francisco, CA  94102.

Copies of explanatory documents are available to the public at (1) the Department of Environment, 1455 Market Street, Suite 1200, San Francisco, California 94103 between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.  Photo identification is required for access to the building; (2) upon request to the Council Secretary at the above address or telephone number 415-355-3709 or via e-mail at [email protected] within three business days of a meeting. Explanatory documents may also be available at the Council’s meeting or agenda website
http://www.sfenvironment.org/about/taskforce/urban-forestry-council/agendas as attachments with each agenda or meeting minutes. Meeting audios can be accessed at the following weblink https://sites.google.com/a/sfenvironment.org/commission/urban-forestry-council/urban-forestry-council-and-committee-meeting-audios.

Respectfully submitted by Monica Fish, Commission Secretary
Urban Forestry Council
San Francisco Department of the Environment
City and County of San Francisco
1455 Market Street, Suite 1200, San Francisco, CA 94103