What's the basic story behind these Rennes trees? The clickable map can let you know, Source: Rennes Municipality

Get to know a tree in Rennes, with the help of an interactive map

Get to know a tree in Rennes, with the help of an interactive map

38,000 of these fellas help to purify the city air, so why not become friends with them?

The French city of Rennes has some 130,000 trees on its territory, and it wants residents to notice them. And for this purpose, the authorities have launched an interactive map where anyone can click on a tree (represented by a dot) and find out more about that specific plant. It makes it so much more personal and special, doesn’t it?

A similar concept, but with a different application has been offered in Rotterdam (the Netherlands), where tourists can take a special augmented reality tour from tree to tree in order to know their stories.

Bringing out tree individualism

For example, at the corner of rue de Chateaugiron and rue de Vern, two magnificent trees frame the Calvary of Saint-Hélier, in front of which thousands of Rennes residents pass each day. But how would they know that these are oaks more than a century old, planted in 1900?

Normally, they wouldn’t. Here are living organisms that have witnessed, and are a part of, the city’s history and yet few people ever stop in their hurried lives to think and admire this simple fact.

Now, however, with the new interactive map available on the city website (only in French), you can locate the specific tree that’s gotten your attention, click on the dot representing it and… voilà.

A pop-up window will inform you of the type of the tree, its variety, its Latin name and the date it was planted. It puts it all into perspective.

Each tree is listed on the map, which you can zoom in, by a point whose colour varies depending on whether its subject is under 10 years old, 10 to 50 years old, or over 50 years old. There’s also a search function to narrow it down by address.

For the time being the map covers 38,000 of the total tree stock, so probably it will be continually upgraded. After all, the city has plans to keep getting greener by planting new species – some 30,000 by 2026.

If there’s one thing we could suggest to make it even more personable…give each tree its own name, as well.



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