Contra Costa County Permits
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Contra Costa County Permits

ArborTech Tree Care & Landscaping has been providing affordable and dependable tree care services in Contra Costa County for many years. For over 30+ years, we have worked in tandem with Contra Costa County residents, property management groups, municipal governments, and other commercial businesses to provide expert tree care services.

Contra Costa County places great value in the trees that reside within their county. Numerous cities in Contra Costa County have received Tree City USA awards from the National Arbor Day Foundation. Additionally, there is a county-wide tree preservation program. We have provided the resources below to help customers access permits information that can be hard to find. ArborTech has the professional equipment and expertise to assist you with any tree care service. We have many happy customers from all over Contra Costa County such as San Ramon, Orinda, Moraga, as well as Walnut Creek, Pleasant Hill and others. Whether you are looking to get tree removal, tree pruning, or a tree inspection from a certified Arborist, feel free to call (510) 881-8733 to book a FREE estimate appointment.

Tree Care Services we provide in Contra Costa County:

Permits: This page is meant as a resource for Contra Costa County residents. The information is current as of October 2021. If you have any questions or concerns regarding a particular tree, please contact your city’s planning department directly. This page is for informational purposes only. ArborTech Tree Care & Landscaping is not responsible for any misunderstanding arising from this information

In the City of San Ramon if your property is a single family residence, then you do not need a tree removal permit to remove a tree on your property except if you wish to remove a native oak tree 6 inches in diameter measured 54 inches above the ground.

If a non-oak tree, not including a willow, fruit tree, eucalyptus, alder, cottonwood, or pine tree, is greater than 8 inches in diameter measured 54 inches above the ground and is on commercial property or on a property owned by a Homeowner’s Association then a tree removal permit is required.

For more information on San Ramon’s Tree Removal Ordinance, please visit San Ramon FAQ’s.

In the City of Walnut Creek, protected trees that require a tree removal permit include trees within city limits that are larger than 9in in diameter (28in in circumference) measured 4.5ft above ground.

For more information, please visit the City of Walnut Creek’s Tree Removal Permit page.

In the City of Lafayette, a tree removal permit is required for removing protected trees that are on public or private land.

List of protected trees:

  1. A tree with a trunk diameter of 12″ or more, of an indigenous species (such as an oak, bay, buckeye or madrone), and on a developed property.

  2. A tree of any size or species, and designated to be preserved as part of an approved development application (check with a planner).

  3. A tree with a trunk diameter of 6″ or more, or one component trunk of a multi-trunked tree with a diameter of 4″ or more, and of a native riparian species (such as a maple, boxelder, alder, walnut, cottonwood, willow, oak, bay, buckeye, or elderberry).

  4. A tree of any species with a diameter of 6″ or more, and on an undeveloped property.

  5. A replacement tree planted as restitution for a violation of this chapter.

  6. A native tree of any size or species within a restricted ridgeline area.

  7. A tree of any size or species within a public right-of-way or a private access easement.

  8. A tree of any size or species within a commercial zoning district.

For more information, please read the City of Lafayette’s Protected Tree Ordinance.

Trees in the City of Orinda require a tree removal permit if the tree is:

  1. On undeveloped property and measure 6in diameter (18.84in circumference) at 4.5ft above ground

  2. On developed property and measures 12in diameter (37.68in circumference) at 4.5ft above ground

  3. Measure 4.5in diameter (14.13in circumference) and are within 30ft of a waterway or streambed

  4. Contractually obliged to be permitted for removal (between the zoning board and the contractor).

For more information, read the City of Orinda’s Tree Removal Permit page

In the town of Danville, a permit is required for tree removal if your tree is a Protected Tree


Protected Trees: Any of the following native trees having a single trunk or main stem 10 inches or greater in diameter or multiple trunk trees with tree trunks totaling 20 inches in diameter, measured 4-1/2 feet above natural grade:

  1. Blue Oak (Quercus Doulgassi)

  2. California Bay (Umbellularia California)

  3. California Black Oak (Quercus Kelloggi)

  4. California Buckeye (Aesculus Californica)

  5. California Sycamore (Platanus Racemosa)

  6. Canyon Live Oak (Quercus Chrysol)

  7. Coast Live Oak (Quercus Agrfolia)

  8. Interior Live Oak (Quercus Wislizenii)

  9. Madrone (Arbutus Menziesii)

  10. London Plane Tree (Plantanus Acerifolia)

  11. Valley Oak (Quercus Lobata)

  12. White Alder (Alnus Rhombifolia)

Heritage Tree: Any single trunked tree, regardless of species, which has a trunk diameter of 36 inches or greater, measured 4-1/2 feet above natural grade. (Multi-trunk trees are not considered heritage trees therefore no permit would be required). Memorial Trees: A tree planted on public property in memory of or commemoration of an individual or individuals

A permit is required to cut down any tree having a trunk diameter of 5″ or more measured 3′ above the natural grade or a tree having multiple trunks with a total perimeter of 40″ or more and is a:

  1. Native tree (most common being Bay, Oak, Redwood, Toyon, or Knobcone Pine Tree; see longer list with permit application)

  2. Orchard tree (fruit and nut trees planted for commercial agricultural purposes)

  3. Tree of historic significance (trees that have historic value related to the heritage of the Town and designated by action of the Town Council)

Exemptions to tree removal permit requirements include:

The removal of a general tree (non protected – see above) located on residentially zoned property;

The removal of a tree located on a residentially zoned property that is located 5′ or closer to a structure (NOTE: Fences do NOT qualify as “structures”)

The removal of a tree located within the public right-of-way and deemed to be hazardous by the Public Works Superintendent are exempt from needing a permit.

For more information please call the town at (925) 376-5200

A tree removal permit is required in the City of Pleasant Hill if the tree is a Protected Tree. Protected trees are:

  1. Any native oak tree measuring 9 inches or larger in diameter measured at 54 inches above the ground.

  2. Any native tree measuring 9 inches or larger in diameter measured at 54 inches above the ground. Indigenous trees include but are not limited to:

  • Bigleaf Maple (Acer Macrophyllum)

  • California Bay or Laurel (Umbellularia Californica)

  • California Black Walnut (Juglans Hindsii )

  • California Buckeye (Aesculus Californica)

  • California Sycamore (Platanus Racemosa)

  • Elderberry (Sambucus Mexicana)

  • Madrone (Arbutus Menziesii)

  • Red Alder (Alnus Oregona)

Contact ArborTech today to schedule a service!