Land Development Code
City of Coral Springs, Florida
Chapter 25 – Zoning
Article IX – Minimum Landscape Requirements
Ordinance No. 2007-109
Enacted September 18, 2007
The purpose of the Land Development Code is to provide regulations for the installation and maintenance of landscaping and landscaped open space, to utilize landscaping and landscaped open space as an effective means of conserving energy, to preserve open space, to maintain and improve the aesthetic quality of the City of Coral Springs, thereby promoting the health and general welfare of the citizenry. In addition, it is the policy of the city commission that every effort shall be made to preserve and maintain natural vegetation within the City of Coral Springs, as identified in the city's comprehensive plan.
In Coral Springs, Florida, the landscape ordinance is listed under zoning in the land development code. The landscape code part of this ordinance talks about landscape design as well as the installation and maintenance of landscape material.
The tree ordinance is also listed under the land development code. It is under Chapter 2 (Building Regulations) – Article I (In General) – Section 212 (Tree Protection and Conservation). The tree ordinance is a separate document from the landscape ordinance, and talks about the tree permit process, tree removal and replacement, tree credits, and code enforcement.
To learn about the tree ordinance you can visit: http://www.scenicflorida.org/lscordcoralsprtrees.html
Some of the design components mentioned in this landscape ordinance are sight triangles, zero lot line developments, parking interiors, berms, and street trees.
In this landscape ordinance, the minimum planting requirements are given for each design component. The landscape architect must meet these minimum requirements with every design.
The technical standards part of the landscape ordinance deal with the specifics of each design component. Technical standards in general deal with specific types, sizes, and health of trees to be planted, percentages of areas that need to be landscaped, minimum and maximum sizes and spacing of the design components as well as other specifics related to each design component. A summarization of the technical standards dealing with the design components listed in the Coral Springs landscape ordinance can be found below.
1. Sight Triangles – In a sight triangle, all landscaping shall provide unobstructed cross-visibility at a level between 30 inches and 6 feet. Sight triangle vegetation requirements must be followed when: an access way intersects a public right-of-way or when the subject property abuts the intersection of two or more public rights-of-way, or the areas of property on both sides of an access way formed by the intersection of each side of the accessory and the public right-of-way line, or the area of property located at a corner formed by the intersection of two or more public rights-of-way.
2. Zero Lot Line Developments – On all zero lot line developments, landscaping along the perimeters must be provided. Some examples of specific technical standards for zero lot line developments are: the landscaping shall include 2 trees for each 40 lineal feet or fraction thereof. A minimum of 1 of these trees shall be a shade tree. Shade trees shall be planted no further apart than 60 foot intervals and no closer than 15 feet apart.
Palm trees and their requirements for usage in zero lot line developments are listed in this section.
3. Parking Interiors – Parking interior landscapes are designed and arranged for the purpose of controlling traffic, providing shade, screening unnecessary views into and within the vehicular use areas and separating the parking circulation and service area. Specifics for parking interiors are as follows: islands in parking bays shall have a minimum landscaped area of 9 feet width and 16 foot length. The island shall include at least 1 tree. Apart from islands, no landscaped area shall have any dimension less than 5 feet. This section also talks about the number of spaces between islands and the percentages and types of trees to be located in the islands.
4. Berms - All berms shall be planted with ground cover or sod. Berms provided to meet buffer provisions shall be planted with a continuous hedge.
5. Street Tree Plantings - Street trees shall be shade trees, unless restricted by other provisions of the landscape code and placed in rights-of-way by the developer or builder prior to the issuance of a certificate of occupancy. One tree shall be required for every 40 feet of street frontage. Trees shall be planted no further apart than 60 foot intervals and no closer than 15 feet apart. This article also mentions that the variety and minimum size of the tree requirements should be met.
Specific information regarding street tree planting can be found in the Street Tree Subsidy Booklet which is located on http://www.coralsprings.org/trees.cfm. More information regarding street tree planting can also be found at http://www.coralsprings.org/publications/homeownersmanual.pdf
Codes and ordinances in the City of Coral Springs, FL are enforced by a seven member board plus two alternate board members that may substitute for any member of the board that is unable to attend the board hearing. Chapter I Article V also talks about the enforcement procedures and fines.
As stated in the landscape code, all required plant
materials shall conform to the Grades and Standards for Florida No. 1 or better
as given in Grades and Standards for Nursery Plants, Part 1 by the Florida
Department of Agriculture. Also
mentioned in the landscape code, is how the landscape plan should be drawn to
be able to issue a building permit.
Building permits should be issued before any building can be altered and
a certificate of occupancy must be presented before anyone can occupy a
residence or business.
I think that this landscape ordinance is a strong ordinance. It lays out many design components of the landscape code and gives many technical standards to go with each design component. I wish the tree ordinance and the landscape code would be grouped together under the section labeled zoning. Tree ordinances and landscape codes go hand in hand because the tree ordinances do not deal with design guidelines while the landscape codes provide landscape architects with specific design guidelines to follow. The combination of tree ordinances and landscape codes make for a more harmonized landscape ordinance.