Last month, the City of Philadelphia Department of Aviation awarded a contract to Hopeworks for geographic information system (GIS) tree mapping services at Philadelphia International Airport (PHL).
“This tree inventory will aid the City of Philadelphia in managing its tree population by giving a thorough understanding of the trees that are located at PHL and enabling informed decisions to be made regarding their upkeep and management,” said PHL Director of Spatial Services Nora Dougherty. “This could involve planting, trimming, removing, and other upkeep tasks for trees. It will assist in creating a long- term management plan and budget for tree planting and maintenance programs.”
The project at PHL will act as a starting point for tracking long-term changes in tree populations by making it possible to track changes in tree health, growth, and diversity as well as assess the success of tree management efforts by routinely updating the inventory data. It will also help in locating any trees at the airport with structural defects or diseases that could endanger safety or property and enable proactive management of such trees to reduce the risk of accidents or property damage. To ensure accuracy and adherence to safety regulations, all tree inventory work will be carried out by a certified arborist, who will oversee the physical tagging and marking of the trees. The GIS team will gather and process high-accuracy data utilizing the most recent technologies.
Working under the supervision of a professional arborist, the Hopeworks’ team will document and arrange a detailed inventory, including species, size, condition, and maintenance advice in a GIS deliverable. By periodically updating the inventory data, it will become possible to track changes in tree health, growth, and diversity, and evaluate the effectiveness of tree management efforts.
The project will be carried out in four stages, and afterward, a visual online virtual map will be created.
Overall, the goal of this tree inventory is to facilitate informed decision-making, sustainable management, and conservation of trees at PHL, to maximize their benefits and minimize their risks. Hopeworks will systematically document and assess the trees on and around the airport, for better understanding and managing their health, condition, and management needs.
“We are very excited to partner with Hopeworks,” said Dougherty. “This collaboration is a great opportunity to engage young professionals from our local communities to participate in PHL projects. We hope that this is just a beginning of our relationship with their team."
About Hopeworks: Hopeworks is a non-profit organization based in Philadelphia that provides training and job opportunities to young people in underserved communities. It was founded in 2000 in Camden, NJ, and opened a new office in Philadelphia’s Kensington neighborhood in January 2023. Hopeworks is a social enterprise that uses technology, healing, and entrepreneurship to transform lives; on average, over 99 percent of young adults (aged 17-26) entering Hopeworks are unemployed, making less than $400 annually. Young adults completing the Hopeworks program make, on average, over $44,000 annually, with a 12-month retention rate of over 90 percent in their jobs. More than 1,000 young people have received extensive technical and soft skill training to succeed in the digital sector. Young professionals at Hopeworks are graduates of the company's workforce development program. That is the Hopeworks difference.