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Nashville

Planting 500,000 Trees in Nashville

To help green the city and mitigate the effects of heat, Bloomberg Associates worked with the City of Nashville to launch a public private partnership seeking to plant 500,000 trees by 2050.

 

It really boils down to the fact that trees and green space are a vital, vital component of a healthy community. They are fundamental.

Bill Frist, former U.S. Senator from Tennessee

Relevant Expertise

Enhance City Communications and Resident Engagement

  • PSAs and Marketing Campaigns

Implement Sustainable and Resilient Solutions

  • Heat Mitigation
  • Tree Planting and Protection

Improve Public Space and Neighborhoods

  • Parks Maintenance and Beautification

Challenge

Nashville is experiencing a period of unprecedented growth. The population increased 45% between 2000 and 2017, leading to a loss of trees throughout Davidson County. Between 2008 and 2016, Nashville’s tree canopy in urban zones fell by 15%, shrinking Nashville’s tree canopy below many comparable cities around the country. To help regrow its canopy, the city sought the advice of Bloomberg Associates.

Root Nashville approach

Approach

The City of Nashville set an ambitious goal to plant 500,000 trees but knew it could not accomplish this on its own. Bloomberg Associates helped conceptualize, design, and roll out a public-private partnership to meet this goal. Working with the co-leads of the campaign, the Cumberland River Compact and Metro Water Services, Bloomberg Associates helped develop every aspect of “Root Nashville”, including governance, branding, fundraising, and public engagement. To maximize the benefits of the trees and protect Nashville’s most vulnerable residents, Bloomberg Associates identified neighborhoods with higher than average asthma rates, surface temperatures, and concentrations of low-income households. Initial plantings were focused on these areas.

Impact

Root Nashville, a new public-private effort, was launched in October 2018, with $1.5 million in private funds, including support from organizations such as NashvilleHealth, the Nature Conservancy of Tennessee, the Nashville Tree Foundation, and the Urban Land Institute of Tennessee. In its first year, the campaign planted more than 5,000 trees – double the number historically planted by the city – and engaged hundreds of volunteers at planting events. Moving forward, the campaign will also include $2 million from the City of Nashville annually earmarked for the urban forest program.

Root Nashville impact

Metrics

8000+ trees planted since 2018

500K trees planted in Davidson County by 2050

$3.5M raised for Root Nashville