Nature

Green hills with orange California poppies in bloom in foreground in Chino Hills State Park, California.

Making California State Parks More Climate-Resilient

A recently released report offers recommendations for keeping state parks healthy and robust, including acquiring additional land for conservation and recreation.

April 22, 2024 - Spectrum News 1

Two large California live oaks in a field of dry grass.

California’s Live Oaks in Focus

The new exhibit explores the hidden network that allows heritage coast live oak trees to communicate with one another.

April 4, 2024 - Outlook Valley Sun

View of small pedestrian bridge in Prescott Preserve Palm Springs, California with palm tree oasis and mountains in background.

Rewilding the Golf Course

How former golf courses are being transformed from manicured lawns to vibrant habitats.

February 26, 2024 - The New York Times

View of downtown Los Angeles from elevated hillside with palm trees in foreground and pink sky.

Planning for Trees in Los Angeles

The County and City of Los Angeles are working together on community engagement efforts for their Urban Forest Management Plans (UFMPs).

February 21, 2024 - LAist

Pink flowers in bloom in front of wood gazebo/pavilion in Descanso Gardens, Los Angeles.

The Importance of Botanical Gardens

Southern California is home to some of the best botanical gardens around. TimeOut just released its list of the top Japanese and botanical gardens, mansion and institution gardens, and urban and hidden gardens.

February 20, 2024 - TimeOut

Looking up at a modern glass skyscraper with green tree next to it.

The Benefits of Trees

In addition to all the economically valuable services they provide, trees are beautiful as pure aesthetic objects and a welcome presence in any landscape.

February 19, 2024 - Corey Squire

Close-up of desert tortoise in Nevada desert.

BLM Allocates Funding to Study Renewables Impact on Public Lands

The large-scale study will assess how proposed solar farms and other renewable energy projects could impact animals, plants, and habitats.

January 1, 2024 - KLAS

Coyote walking down paved road in Los Angeles park.

The Year in Urban Wildlife

A roundup of stories about the creatures that share our cities.

December 27, 2023 - Bloomberg CityLab

Group of sparrows sitting on decorative metal fence.

The Disparate Impacts of Urban Noise

Research shows higher levels of noise in formerly redlined neighborhoods, disrupting the health of both human and animal residents.

December 7, 2023 - Streetsblog USA

Young male Tule elk stands on green outcrop with lake in background in California

Celebrating California's Biodiversity

This year marks the fifth annual California Biodiversity Day, established in 2018 to celebrate and encourage actions to protect the state’s exceptional biodiversity.

September 5, 2023 - California State Parks

Young bull moose stands in grassy field in Bridger-Teton National Forest

How Noise Pollution Impacts Nature

Overly loud noise isn’t just a public health risk for humans.

July 11, 2023 - High Country News

Man in blue jacket photographs birds outdoors with zoom lens

The Importance of Community Scientists

Community science mobilizes the public to work alongside scientists to help answer questions about the world. Learn about the valuable contributions of community scientists in Hawai'i.

June 26, 2023 - Honolulu Civil Beat

Vacant Lot

The Importance of Unintentional Nature in Cities

A new book argues in favor of spontaneous, informal natural spaces.

March 14, 2022 - Bloomberg CityLab

Los Angeles Sunset

Hiking For All: Making the Great Outdoors More Welcoming

Not everyone feels comfortable going for a hike. Various groups are working to break down barriers so that more people can experience the joys and benefits of being in nature.

April 1, 2021 - Los Angeles Times

Canada WInter

Serpentine Maze: Pop-Up Parks in the Pandemic

If the combined effects of winter's cold and the pandemic has you bummed, check out this community-building exercise in the frozen North.

January 20, 2021 - PlaceShakers

Chicago Lake Michigan Trees

More Parks and Trees Can Increase Life Expectancy

New research shows that increasing park acreage in areas that face park deficits and low levels of tree canopy could lead to significant population-level increases in life expectancy.

November 22, 2020 - Parks & Recreation Magazine

A Pirate Looks at . . . Seventy?

Reflections on a long career, a great interview, and six sssentials for greener, healthier communities via Kaid Benfield, one of the founders of Smart Growth America

September 11, 2020 - PlaceShakers

National Park Service

Earth Day: 1970 and Now

The decade that began with the first Earth Day became a pivotal moment in U.S. environmental awareness and action. The core principles of the environmental decade are now questioned in the highest offices of our land.

April 22, 2020 - Bruce Stiftel

California Spring

Lessons Emerge as Cities Cede Public Space to Contain the Pandemic

One of the dominant themes to emerge from the spread of COVID-19 is the conflict between the need to be in nature for health and well-being while avoiding public space as much as possible to prevent the spread.

April 6, 2020 - James Brasuell

Wynyard Quarter

Code Score: A New Aid for Aligning Policy and Vision With Outcomes

A compendium of benefits of walkable urban places, put together by Hazel Borys and Kaid Benfield.

October 2, 2019 - PlaceShakers

News from HUD User

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Call for Speakers

Mpact Transit + Community

New Updates on PD&R Edge

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Top Books

An annual review of books related to planning.

Top Websites

The best of the Internet—since 2002.

Top Apps

Planning apps for a brave new world.

Top Schools

The definitive ranking of graduate planning programs.

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.