Lines of Trees within the System of Road Construction and Maintenance in the 18th and 19th Centuries

Stromoradia v systéme stavby a údržby ciest 18. a 19. storočia

The occurrence of tree lines started to increase from the Renaissance period. At that time, however, it was merely landscaping in precisely designed ornamental gardens. Planting lines of trees along public roads started to be more frequent in the early 18th century, coming from the French school of modern road building. Trees became a fully-fledged part of a technical installation - a road. At first, their function was primarily aesthetic - helping to incorporate the road structure into the countryside. Later on, other economical and practical advantages were discovered. The method of French road construction was also adopted by traffic engineers in the Habsburg Monarchy. Therefore, from the 1740s, trees started to occur along new roads. Until the 1880s, the quantitative parameters regarding development in Hungary were lower in comparison to other parts of the country, due to political, social, as well as financial reasons. The Unifying Road Act I./1890 was finally adopted, twenty years after it had been prepared. It provided the fundamental unification of the conditions for planting lines of trees along the roads in all regions of Hungary. However, the true breakthrough came with the article XII of 1894, which stipulated an obligation to plant a tree nursery in every municipality and to start planting trees along the roads to a greater extent.