CHSRA Urban Forestry Banner

About the program

Honoring its commitment to zero-net direct greenhouse gas emissions in construction, the California High-Speed Rail Authority (Authority) is pleased to present the details of the first group of urban forestry projects. CAL FIRE, in partnership with the Authority, has awarded $2.5 million in tree planting grants to date to offset greenhouse gas emissions associated with construction of the first portion of the high-speed rail system. The more than 6,000 trees to be planted will reduce greenhouse gases and provide numerous environmental, social, and economic benefits to disadvantaged communities in the vicinity of the rail line between San Jose to Anaheim.

These grants:

  • Fund tree planting projects to reduce greenhouse gas levels
  • Arrest the decline of urban forests and improve their structure and function
  • Increase climate change resilience
  • Improve the quality of the environment in urban areas
  • Optimize co-benefits to urban residents


Two organizations have been awarded funding.

  • Tree Fresno - $1 million grant
    • 2,400 trees will be planted in schools, parks, and in residential areas in disadvantaged communities in the greater Fresno region
    • Focus will be put on the largest trees possible, as these provide the greatest greenhouse gas benefits
    • Species will be chosen wisely for drought tolerance and make use of water-wise irrigation
    • Educational opportunities, including curricular activities, will be provided associated with the tree plantings
    • Continued care for the trees for the length of the grant will be ensured and ongoing maintenance will be provided
    • Plantings are scheduled to begin in spring of 2018

  • California Urban Forests Council - $1.5 million grant
    • 4,000 trees will be planted in disadvantaged communities along the rail corridor, half in public areas and half in residential areas
    • Council will build a network of urban forestry support to create greener, cleaner communities by working with local partners in disadvantaged neighborhoods
    • Informational and outreach opportunities will be provided to engage residents and train volunteers in tree care
    • Continued care for the trees for the length of the grant will be ensured and ongoing maintenance will be provided
    • Plantings are scheduled to begin in fall of 2018


  • Tree planing at West Fresno Middle School

    5/29/18 - The Authority and Tree Fresno began the first phase of tree planting at West Fresno Middle School. Nearly 200 trees were planted by volunteers and students. For more information and photos from this event, visit

  • 3/09/19 - In cooperation with the City of Glendale, West Coast Arborists, Inc. coordinated the help of 120 enthusiastic community members to plant 40 new trees in Glendale’s Verdugo Park. Find out more at

  • Spring 2019
    • 2/23/19 - Van Nuys/Sherman Oaks Recreation Center, Sherman Oaks
    • 2/23/19 - Lanark Recreation Center, Canoga Park
    • 3/09/19 - Smith-Murphy Park, Buena Park
    • 3/09/19 - New Heart Foursquare Church, Covina
    • 3/23/19 - Norwalk Library, Norwalk
    • 4/06/19 - Cudahy Library, Cudahy
    • 4/20/19 - Paradise Valley Pocket Park, South San Francisco
    • 4/27/19 - Lake Center Park, Santa Fe Springs
    • 4/27/19 - Holifield Park, Norwalk
    • 4/27/19 - Gellert Park, Daly City
  • More planting events are scheduled to begin in fall of 2019.