Welcome to Urban Ecology

Urban Ecology is dedicated to developing harmony with urban planning and nature.

This site highlights all that Urban Ecology has accomplished over the years. We hope these archives inspire you to continue the pursuit of harmony between urban planning and the natural world around us.

Urban Ecology is published to provide information and encourage dialogue on issues related to the urban environment, city and regional planning, and metropolitan affairs.

Urban Ecology gives voice to an ecological urbanism. It encourages readers engaged in urban design, governance, and activism to incorporate ecological sensitivity into their work and to understand the links between the built and natural environments and the many-layered concerns and needs of the people who live in urban settings around the world.

Success Stories!

Below are just a few of our success stories. You can find more details of some of these success stories under our Community Design Consulting section.

Green Business Certification

Summary The San Francisco Green Business Team includes Urban Ecology, the San Francisco Department of Public Health (SF.DPH), San Francisco Department of the Environment (SFE), and the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SF.PUC). This team provides free...

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The Living Classroom

San Francisco, California Urban Ecology is partnering with Literacy for Environmental Justice (LEJ) to provide a participatory design process involving four LEJ youth Community Geographers. Urban Ecology will introduce the youth to the concepts involved in site...

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Nevin Park Re-Design Project

Richmond, CA Background Nevin Park sits at the center of Richmond’s Iron Triangle, an inner city neighborhood that is an historic hub of the City’s African-American community. The Nevin Community Center and the Richmond Museum of History, housed in a landmarked...

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Active and Healthy Parks and Schoolyards

Oakland, California Challenge Residents of Oakland’s Eastlake, Lower San Antonio, and Fruitvale neighborhoods suffer disproportionately from illnesses such as heart disease, hypertension, and asthma. A range of factors contribute to the prevalence of these illnesses...

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Visitacion Valley

San Francisco, California Challenge Visitacion Valley in San Francisco, California, has been changing steadily as immigrants from Asia have added to the community’s diversity, and as mounting real estate prices in other parts of San Francisco have driven...

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Community Design Consulting Services

Some of our past projects.

Past Articles from Our Journal

You can visit our contact page to submit your own article! Find all our past journal articles here.

Habitat II Conference Tidbits

Participants at the Habitat II City Summit were snowed under by an avalanche of information describing urban development around the world. Following are a few tidbits and gleanings from the conference: The world's urban population will rise from 1.54 billion in 1975...

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A Letter from the President

I thought I'd take this opportunity to report to you from the front lines of sustainable development. Since September 1996 I've been working with Van der Ryn Architects and the Ecological Design Institute, where we get many opportunities to plan and design using the...

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Car Sharing Takes Off in Europe

by Conrad Wagner and Richard Katzev Car sharing is becoming popular in Europe, especially in Switzerland and Germany. In Switzerland a car sharing company, Auto Teilet Genossenschaft (ATG), already has more than 6,000 members, while a similar organization in Germany,...

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Alleys and Backyard Housing

By David Winslow Nestled among the back alleys of many existing neighborhoods is a large, fallow urban resource. Alleys and backyards, if reclaimed as sites for secondary dwellings, could sustain unobtrusive and affordable new housing with only modest increases in...

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Signs of Hope: Bay Area Success Stories

Edited by Stephen Wheeler Although the Bay Area is moving away from sustainability in many ways -- in terms of automobile use, resource consumption, suburban sprawl, affordable housing and equity, for example -- it is making progress in other areas. Following...

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San Diego Canyons Mix Coyotes and House Cats

Kevin Crooks A century of intensive urban development has destroyed most of the native sage scrub and chaparral habitat in Southern California -- helping to create one of the world's largest epicenters of extinction. Indeed, San Diego has more threatened species of...

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A Brief Reading List On Urban Sustainability

We are often asked by those new to the subject to recommend some initial readings on urban sustainability. Following is a brief listing of some recent works. Many of these books have been reviewed in past issues of The Urban Ecologist, and several are available...

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Living in Metro Toronto

by Monika Jaeggi Known for years as one of the most narrow-minded and uncosmopolitan of the British colonial cities, Toronto has become the most culturally diverse city in the world since the 1960s as a result of rapid immigration. International surveys also...

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