The project arborist is responsible for carrying out the inspections, supervision, monitoring, and certification of trees during a development project. Details of the project arborist are often required to be submitted to the consent authority prior to construction.

There are various stages in the development process (from site acquisition to completion) where the AQF level 5 project arborist is required to monitor or provide certification (a written statement of compliance). Three key stages of the development are outlined below:

  • Pre-construction: A pre-construction meeting should be attended by the site manager, the project arborist, and contractors to introduce the tree protection plan and its requirements. Fencing and other protection measures are to be installed in compliance with conditions of consent and as detailed in the tree protection plan. Once the tree protection measures have been installed, they must be certified by the AQF level 5 project arborist.
  • Construction: The project arborist will generally be required to undertake monthly site inspections to monitor and record the ongoing health and condition of the trees during construction. The project arborist will also be required to supervise and certify any work carried out within the tree protection zone (TPZ). If there is non-compliance with tree protection measures or if trees have been damaged, a time frame for compliance and remedial works should be specified by the AQF level 5 project arborist. The determining authority may need to be notified of non-compliance issues.
  • Post-construction: Practical completion assumes that all construction and landscaping works are finished. At practical completion, all remaining tree protection measures (such as tree protection fencing, trunk protection, and ground protection) should be removed. Following the final inspection and the completion of any remedial works, the project arborist should certify (as appropriate) that the completed works have been carried out in compliance with the approved plans and specifications for tree protection. Certification should include a statement on the condition of the retained trees, details of any deviations from the approved tree protection measures, and their impacts on trees.

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