Planting and screening for parking areas

Zoning lots that contain a group parking facility with 10 or more parking spaces that are not fully enclosed, shall be subject to paragraphs (a) and (b) of this Section and may be subject to paragraph (c) of this Section.

(a)        Tree planting requirements for open parking

The provisions of Section 37-921 (Perimeter landscaping) shall apply to all facilities. In addition, one tree, of three inch caliper or more, pre-existing or newly planted, shall be provided for each four open parking spaces and may be located in the perimeter landscaped area of the parking area or in planting islands within the parking area.

However, where 30 or more open parking spaces are provided, at least 50 percent of the required trees shall be located within planting islands within the parking area. Such planting islands shall have a minimum area of 150 square feet of pervious surface and comply with the requirements of paragraphs (a), (b) and (c) of Section 37-922 (Interior landscaping).

For open parking areas with at least 36 parking spaces, the total number of trees required pursuant to Section 37-922 shall be superseded by the number of trees required pursuant to this Section.

Notwithstanding the above, for open parking areas where solar canopies will cover more than 75 percent of the parking spaces in an accessory off-street parking facility or public parking lot, or any portion thereof with more than 10 parking spaces, the provisions of Section 37-923 (Alternative compliance for solar canopies), including associated applicability and modifications to the provisions of Sections 37-921 and 37-922, may be applied in lieu of the provisions of this Section.

(b)        Screening requirements

For open parking areas or parking garages located on the ground floor and not fully enclosed, such non-enclosed portion shall be screened from all adjoining zoning lots by a landscaped area at least four feet in width, densely planted with shrubs maintained at a maximum height of three feet. Open parking areas shall also be screened from all adjoining streets by a perimeter landscaped area at least seven feet in width in accordance with Section 37-921 (Perimeter landscaping). Such perimeter landscaped area may be interrupted only by vehicular entrances and exits. Sidewalks that provide a direct connection between the public sidewalk and a pedestrian circulation route within the parking area may also interrupt a perimeter landscaped area.

In addition, such screening shall be maintained in good condition at all times and may be interrupted by normal entrances and exits.

(c)        Planting waiver

Tree planting and screening requirements may be waived if the Commissioner of Buildings certifies that planting is unfeasible due to:

(1)        unique geological conditions, such as excessive subsurface rock conditions or high water table;

(2)        underground municipal infrastructure; or

(3)        a City, State or Federal mandated brownfield remediation that requires the site to be capped.

Such waiver shall be based on a report prepared by a licensed engineer that such conditions exist.

For developments in Residence Districts, trees provided in accordance with the provisions of this Section may be counted for the purposes of meeting the requirements of paragraph (a) of Section 107-32. Furthermore, for developments in Commercial or Manufacturing Districts, which provide trees in accordance with the provisions of this Section, the requirements of paragraph (a) of Section 107-32 shall not apply.