Public Health


How the Urban Tree Canopy Can Save Lives in a Heat Wave

New research reveals the direct link between planting more trees and a reduction in heat-related deaths.

February 6, 2023 -

"Caution! Extreme heat danger" sign in Death Valley National Park with desert mountains in background

The Importance of Cooling Centers

A new UCLA study examines how formal and informal cooling centers are being used in Los Angeles County.

January 16, 2023 - UCLA Newsroom

Oil Pump in Los Angeles

Lawsuit Challenges L.A. Oil Drilling Ban

Oil companies with operations in the city of Los Angeles are suing over an ordinance that seeks to phase out drilling within city limits due to public health and environmental concerns.

January 12, 2023 - Los Angeles Times

Aerial view of port community of San Pedro, California

EPA Grants Target Environmental Justice

The agency will administer $100 million in grants to cities, states, and tribal nations as part of the Biden administration’s Justice40 initiative.

January 12, 2023 - Route Fifty

Close-up of fence covered with flowers, flyers, and other memorial items at site of deadly Twin Parks building fire

U.S. Fire Administration to Investigate Building Fires

New legislation gives the federal agency power to identify the causes of deadly fires and recommend improvements.

January 11, 2023 - The New York Times

Coronavirus Social Distancing

Friday Eye Candy: Covid-19, Then and Now

The New York Times compared images from readers portraying similar scenes in 2020 and 2022.

January 6, 2023 - The New York Times

People biking across the Queensboro Bridge

U.S. Population Growing Again in 2022 After Flatlining in 2021

The U.S. Census released new population estimates last week, showing an increase in population growth just a year after national population growth crawled to an unprecedented halt.

December 27, 2022 - James Brasuell

A school blacktop is viewed from bird’s eye view. The blacktop is adorned with painting and colors for games. but no children are present.

Identifying and Improving Schools Most In Need of Greening

Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) has developed an index to help identify the schools that are most in need of greening resources.

December 19, 2022 - Los Angeles Unified School District

Helicopter flying over New York City with Empire State Building visible on left

Helicopter Noise Complaints Surge in New York

Residents argue the city and state must do more to regulate the hundreds of flights that criss-cross the area on a daily basis.

December 13, 2022 - StreetsBlog NYC

View from back of two elderly people sitting on park bench

How Neighborhoods Impact Older Adults’ Resiliency to Climate Change

New research seeks to learn how homes, neighborhoods, and communities affect how older residents are affected by climate change.

December 7, 2022 - Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University

View of black oil wells behind chain link fence with barbed wire top

Los Angeles To Phase Out Oil Drilling

The city has banned new wells and will end all extraction within two decades.

December 6, 2022 - Los Angeles Times

Urban separated bike lane with street trees on one side and cars parked on the other

How Urban Trees Save Lives

New research shows a strong connection between a healthy urban tree canopy and lowered mortality rates.

December 1, 2022 - Congress For New Urbanism

Walkable Street

Report: Sustainability Goals Go Unmet in Many Global Cities

Cities around the world are failing to achieve progress toward their sustainability and public health goals, new research finds.

November 17, 2022 - Brookings


Study: Bikeshare Boosts Riding in Philadelphia

Public health researchers outline the benefits of Philadelphia’s Indego bikeshare network, which has encouraged more residents to choose biking over other transit modes.

November 2, 2022 - WHYY

A group of protestors oppose mandatory vaccinations during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Shifting Demographics of Covid-19

For most of the Covid-19 pandemic, Black Americans died at much higher rates than White Americans. That trend has reversed at times during the past year.

October 23, 2022 - The Washington Post

"NO Public Restroom" sign on restaurant window

Opinion: Opening Restrooms to Public Is Good for Business

For many people with chronic illnesses, access to public restrooms can be a critical medical issue. Incentivizing businesses to open their restrooms can fill a critical gap in U.S. cities.

October 9, 2022 - Bloomberg CityLab

Schoolyard with leafy green trees surrounded by benches

Investing in Green Schoolyards

California's budget now includes an unprecedented investment of $150 million to create green schoolyards and schoolyard forests at K-12 schools across the state.

September 20, 2022 - Green Schoolyards America blog

Green Healthy Community

Making Healthy Places

The editors of the book "Making Healthy Places," recently published in a second edition by Island Press, discuss the intersections of public health and planning, including key concepts such as green gentrification, health impact assessments, and AI.

September 18, 2022 - Laurie Mazur

Air Pollution

Democrats Call for Stronger Action on Environmental Justice

The Justice40 initiative could make a major difference for communities burdened by pollution, but only if funds are spent on projects that maintain a focus on equity.

September 18, 2022 - The Washington Post

"QUIET Please be considerate of our neighbors" sign on outside of building with dim light

Houston Doubles Noise Violation Fine

In response to a spike in complaints from people living near bars and clubs, Houston has updated its noise ordinance to raise fines and require additional permits for amplified sound.

September 8, 2022 - Houston Chronicle

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.