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.

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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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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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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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.

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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Creating the Blueprint: A Participatory Process

by Wood Turner Urban Ecology's Blueprint for a Sustainable Bay Area spells out the organization's vision of how the San Francisco Bay Area can become a better place to live for all its residents. It is the result of a thoughtful and tireless process intended to...

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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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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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Ecological Development in the U.S.

Ecotown Begins Construction in Virginia Work began in May 1996 on the new ecological town of Haymount, Virginia, near Washington, D.C. Designed by the "new urbanist" firm of Duany & Plater-Zyberk, the community will feature 4,000 housing units in multifamily...

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Addressing Inequity at Barrio Logan

by Michael Rios The public spaces of Barrio Logan, a low-income Latino neighborhood in San Diego, proclaim a unique Mexican and Chicano culture. The neighborhood faces the San Diego Bay towards Coronado Island and is thirteen miles from the Tijuana border. Physically...

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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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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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Havana’s Self-Provision Gardens

By Angela Moskow Urban agriculture is actively promoted in Havana, Cuba as a means of addressing the acute food scarcity problems of the "Special Period in Peacetime," which developed when Soviet aid and trade were drastically curtailed starting in 1989. During...

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