This city aims to plant one tree for every inhabitant

The project will see 300,000 trees planted each year, with over a quarter of million planted already.

Two hundred potted trees that adorned the Supersalone fair in Milan, Italy in September 2021 will be planted as part of an initiative to grow three million new trees in the city by 2030.

Launched last year, the ten-year Forestami project will see 300,000 trees planted each year, with over a quarter of million planted already.

“To this day [end of September 2021] we’ve planted 281,160 trees,” said a spokesperson for Forestami. “The 200 trees at the Supersalone are waiting to be planted in the next few weeks in some specific areas of Milan.”

The trees will be planted around the greater metropolitan area of Milan, which includes the city and surrounding towns and villages and has a population of 3.2 million people in an area of 1,575 m2.

The project is thought to be the most ambitious urban greening project in the world.

“It’s basically one tree for every inhabitant,” said Milanese architect Stefano Boeri, who proposed the project in 2005. “It’s one of the most democratic, inclusive and less expensive ways to tackle global warming and it also cleans up the air.”

The project is being managed by the Politecnico di Milano, which is identifying locations, choosing species of trees and organizing planting and maintenance.

“The goal is not only about planting, but also it’s about creating social environments,” Boeri said. “We have invested a lot in the edge of the city. We are working with schools to create public spaces and playgrounds.”

As part of his design for the Supersalone fair earlier this month, Boeri installed a “forest” of potted trees at the entrance to the Fiera Milano fairground. Other trees were dotted around the exhibition halls.

Takeaway

Forestami is a ten-year project to grow three million new trees in Milan, Italy by 2030. The project will plant 300,000 trees each year, with over a quarter of a million planted already.

The trees will be planted around the city of Milan and in surrounding towns and villages. With a population of 3.2 million people in an area of 1,575 m2, there will be roughly one tree for every inhabitant.

According to Stefano Boeri, who first suggested the project in 2005, the goal is not only about planting, but also about creating social environments.
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Action point

FOR PUBLIC OFFICIALS:
Research into urban greening has revealed a plethora of benefits, from lower crime rates to better population health, increased mental wellbeing and greater productivity — in addition to a growing awareness of how deeply deforestation is exacerbating climate change. In other words, the importance of green areas in metropolitan spaces cannot be underestimated. And you, as a public official, could lead a similar project in your municipality, while scoring some political points along the way. It's a clear win-win for all parties involved.

FOR BUSINESSES:
Research into urban greening has revealed a plethora of benefits, from lower crime rates to better population health, increased mental wellbeing and greater productivity — in addition to a growing awareness of how deeply deforestation is exacerbating climate change. In other words, the importance of green areas in metropolitan spaces cannot be underestimated. As a business owner (or a manager), you may find a profitable angle in such a project, helping both the city and its constituents as well as your bottom line. It's a clear win-win for all parties involved.