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Aspinwall Shade Tree Commission

The Aspinwall Shade Tree Commission (ASTC) was established in 2009 to manage, monitor, and care for the shade trees in the Borough right-of-way. 

Contact the Shade Tree Commission 

Mail to:     Aspinwall Shade Tree Commission 

                  217 Commercial Avenue 

                  Aspinwall, PA 15215

Recent Sidewalk vs a Borough Tree Violations

If a violation is tree related, please contact the ASTC before attempting any pruning of roots or branches. They can advise on best practices and possibly offer assistance. This includes raised sidewalks and overhanging branches as they relate to trees in the Borough Right-of-Way. If you are not sure if your tree is in the Borough Right-Of-Way, please contact the Borough Office. This is a new process for all of us - residents and ASTC - and we would like to work together as we work to make improvements in our town

The Ordinance:

  • The ASTC is comprised of 5 members, residents of Aspinwall, who serve without compensation.

  • Defines "Shade Tree" as "any tree, shrub or other woody plant, which is planted in any right-of-way, or has at least one half of trunk, branches or roots extending into any right-of-way."

  • Vests in the ASTC "exclusive custody and control" of all Shade Trees.

  • Requires anyone who wishes to plant, remove, or trim a Shade Tree or that portion of any tree, which extends over the right-of-way to obtain approval in advance of any work by making a written request to the ASTC. Requests will be reviewed at the regularly scheduled monthly meetings.

  • Download the appropriate form for any of these requests. 

What has the Aspinwall Shade Tree Commission Done?

  • Planted more than 150 trees in the Borough through the TreeVitalize program and resident requests.

  • Tree plantings throughout the community – residential street trees, Fireman’s Park, Field Avenue Park, and at Borough gateways.

  • Commissioned a complete shade tree inventory for the Borough in 2014, which details location, type, and health of each tree on Borough property.

  • Inspected numerous potentially hazardous trees.

  • Reviewed tree trimming and removal requests on a regular basis.

  • Worked with Public Utilities to ensure best practices trimming of street trees.

  • Continued to meet with interested parties seeking approvals for tree pruning or removal, and replacement tree planting as required by Borough ordinance.

The ASTC meets the third Wednesday of every month at 6:30pm at the Borough Building, unless otherwise announced. All meetings are open to the public and we, as the ASTC, encourage you to attend. Visit the Borough Events Calendar to check on meeting days, dates, times and locations.


Agendas and minutes for meetings of the Shade Tree Commission are available as downloadable PDFs.  Minutes are posted after they have been approved.

Click Here



  • Bruce Columbus, Chair

  • Jack Gaddess, Vice-Chair

  • Elizabeth Brown 

  • Joffy Thompson

  • Miranda DiGarmo

  • David Brown, Council Representative

Alternatives Members:

  • Veronica Harris

The Aspinwall Shade Tree Commission has planted 137* trees throughout the Borough in coordination with TreePittsburgh and the Western PA Conservancy through their TreeVitalize Program. It seeks applications from residents and property owners for locations for future plantings every February/March.  Planting occurs in the fall. The Shade Tree Commission is especially interested in locations where a mature tree will shade sidewalks and streets.                                                                                                              * In the four years from 2014-2017

Annual Tree Planting Program 

Winter Tree Pruning 

The ASTC regularly prunes younger trees, typically 1-4 years old, to encourage proper growth patterns and health of the tree.  Pruning takes place during winter months when trees are dormant. Pruning events are announced on the Borough website and are limited to certified Tree Tenders.

Mulching Program 

Occurs as needed to safeguard trees, provide adequate nutrients, and/or provide a barrier from landscaping damage due to weed-whackers and lawnmowers.  For proper mulching technique, follow this link. 

Tree Care Links

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