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.

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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EastSide Community Cultural Center

Oakland, California Challenge A thriving population of homegrown neighborhood artists has emerged in Oakland’s San Antonio, encouraging community participation in the arts through after-school training programs, events for young adults, street banners and murals,...

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Commercial Center Revitalization

Oakland, California Challenge Once home to two movie theaters and a trolley line, Oakland’s 23rd Avenue today has boarded-up storefronts, traffic that speeds by too quickly, and vacant lots that invite criminal activity. Though community members are sometimes divided...

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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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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.

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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Combating Supermarket Flight In Los Angeles

By Michelle Mascarenhas Over the past 30 years, supermarket chains in Los Angeles have closed older, less profitable urban stores to build bigger and more modern markets in the suburbs. This trend follows the out-migration of middle-class households from the city....

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Jobs and Environmental Stewardship in Taiwan

by Randy Hester The waters of Tsengwen River and Chi Ku Lagoon along Taiwan’s southwest coast are the scene of a controversy that is increasingly familiar around the world. Taiwan’s President Lee Tung Hui and many land speculators support a 7000-acre development...

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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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Saving Durban’s Medicinal Plants

Rebecca Koffman Every day at the Durban Station Market, street vendors do a booming trade selling plant muti (medicine) to the thousands of commuters who pour into the city-center. In this port city, in South Africa's Eastern Province of Kwazulu-Natal, over 700...

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Wilderness in South Central Los Angeles?

Randy Hester Despite its well-deserved bashing for being utterly car-dependent, water-irresponsible and unsustainable, Los Angeles has borne some valuable precedents for keeping and recreating nature in the city. The No Oil fight to save the Santa Monica Bay, the Los...

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Restoring the Bronx Coastline

Paul Mankiewicz Today's urban estuaries are lined with miles of linear bulkhead and seawall. But just a century ago, they had a highly varied coastline of beaches, marshes, rocky outcrops, bays, cliffs and creek mouths. Where could the immense amount of materials...

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