A NSW Government website

Greening our City grant program

Rosemeadow demonstration project

Increasing tree canopy cover is important for climate change adaptation in urban areas. Trees provide shade, cooling, contribute to improved storm water management and urban amenity.

The urban heat island effect in Western Sydney is a major challenge that affects the health and wellbeing of the community.  Increasing tree canopy cover in urban areas is a way to mitigate the urban heat island effect to create cooler communities and a more liveable future.

Under the Greening our City program, the NSW Government aims to expand urban tree canopy to 40 percent across Greater Sydney with a target to plant 1 million new trees by 2022. There is also a longer-term commitment to plant 5 million trees by 2030. The program focuses on planting more trees in streets, parks, private yards, neighbourhoods and schools.

Launched in July 2019, Rosemeadow was the first demonstration project for the program and supports the implementation of the Premier’s Priorities. The project is an innovative NSW Government initiative that sets a new benchmark for tree planting in urban environments to improve liveability for communities in areas with critical urban heat problem.

Purpose of the Rosemeadow demonstration project

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Three school girls in uniform plant a tree as part of a tree planting demonstration.
The suburb of Rosemeadow has one of the lowest levels of tree canopy in the Greater Sydney region. The project explored ways to achieve the 40% canopy target through tree planting on public land including streets and open spaces that have a dual-purpose as stormwater overland flow infrastructure.
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The purpose of the project was to demonstrate best-practice methods for the expansion of urban tree canopy across Greater Sydney, that could be recorded and replicated in other local government areas for the benefit of the community.
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Increasing tree canopy cover in open space results in improved water quality, reduced flooding risk, increased urban cooling, improved stormwater management and improved recreation opportunities.
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The project created a useful methodology framework that demonstrates how trees can provide improved environments and enhance liveability. The framework sets to inform future urban tree canopy projects across Greater Sydney and wider NSW.

Methodology framework

In collaboration with Campbelltown City Council, the department commissioned 3 design documents to demonstrate industry best-practice and showcase the methodology, learnings and outcomes of the project.

These documents are intended for use by councils and industry to replicate for tree plantings on streets, reserves and in open spaces.

Haydon Park investigation study – Planting trees in stormwater basins: a theoretical case study that tests the impact of tree planting in dual-purpose open space that also functions as a stormwater detention basin.

Investigation study part 1 (8.8 MB, PDF)

Download study

Investigation study part 2 (4.1 MB, PDF)

Download study

Street tree planting design manual: a how to guide to identify and prioritise streets for tree planting, design considerations and innovative tree planting solutions.

Design manual (10.3 MB, PDF)

Download manual

Copperfield drive technical study: an example of best-practice design for street trees and integrated water management system. Built works on Copperfield Drive have been installed as a living demonstration of the outcomes of this project.

Technical study (8.1 MB, PDF)

Download study

Green Innovations Webinar

In October 2021, the department held a webinar showcasing three different scales of projects where innovative approaches to using stormwater have been adopted and help provide improved outcomes for trees.

If you missed the session, you can watch the webinar recording.

Project overview

Community consultation

Extensive community consultation was undertaken in 2019  to ensure the successful delivery of the project. The local community, including residents and schools were actively involved in the design of streets, open spaces and the planting of trees.

Between 2020-2021 the project was impacted by drought, bushfires and COVID-19 restrictions. In 2021, Campbelltown City Council informed the community about upcoming tree planting activities in their local area.

Project design

2019 to 2021: With research from REALMstudios, E2DesignLab and Spiire, the project explored integrated stormwater management and its role in supporting passive irrigation and a healthy urban tree canopy, along with research partners, Macquarie, Western Sydney University and Royal Botanic Garden Sydney.

Tree planting in Rosemeadow

Activities to prepare for tree planting in Rosemeadow started in June 2021. Trees are planned to be planted at the following locations:

  • Copperfield Drive: 300 trees
  • Reserves: 1,200 trees
  • Schools: 450 trees

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, tree planting has been delayed until restrictions ease.

Want to know more?

To find out more about the project please contact the project team via email.