View of Topanga Canyon in the Santa Monica Mountains.

California's Top-Rated Park for Hikers Is Inside the City of LA

According to AllTrails, a popular fitness and travel mobile app, Topanga State Park has many highly-rated trails, most of which are of moderate difficulty and vary in length from three to seven miles.

April 2, 2024 - The Travel

View of dirt trail between shrubs with downtown Los Angeles skyline in background.

Advancing Park Equity Through Needs Assessments

City Parks Alliance, in partnership with Prevention Institute, recently hosted a webinar about park equity and collaboration, focusing on the Los Angeles Countywide Parks Needs Assessment.

October 4, 2023 - City Parks Alliance

View of wooded mountains with sunset in background in the Smoky Mountains.

Diverse Perspectives of America Outdoors

Best-selling writer, podcaster and comedian Baratunde Thurston travels the country to better understand and explain people's complex relationship with the outdoors in a series on PBS.

October 3, 2023 - PBS

Cars wait in line to get into Yosemite National Park

Overcrowding at Yosemite National Park

Long lines of cars have been trying to enter the park, with many stuck in traffic for hours and vehicles parked illegally in traffic lanes, on grass, and between rocks.

July 6, 2023 - Los Angeles Times

Person on mountain bike biking on trail in Colorado with mountains in background

‘Queer Byke Brigade’ Wants to Make the Outdoors More Inclusive

A Colorado group of bike enthusiasts is creating a safe, welcoming outdoor space for LGBTQ+ people in Montezuma County.

June 29, 2023 - The Daily Yonder

Trail through forested area in Virginia

Virginia Office of Trails Allocated $89 Million

The newly formed agency is tasked with developing and improving trail networks in the state.

October 28, 2022 - The Virginia Mercury

National Park Campgrounds

Return of the National Parks

After more than a year of COVID-19-related restrictions and limited travel, rising attendance figures across national parks show Americans are eager to explore the great outdoors.

June 16, 2021 - CNN

Black Lives Matter Protest

COVID-19: What About Those Protests?

While not conclusive, evidence suggests that relatively few transmissions of the coronavirus occurred during the widespread protests that followed the death of George Floyd due to the outdoor settings, being in motion and wearing of masks.

July 3, 2020 - The Washington Post

Play Dismay: Traffic and the Epidemic of Cloistered Children

Sarah Goodyear examines the connection between the way we design our streets and the reluctance of parents to let their children play outdoors.

August 9, 2013 - The Atlantic Cities

The History of Washington D.C.'s Sidewalk Cafes

Washington D.C.'s first sidewalk cafe opened 5-plus years ago. This piece from The Washington Post looks at the history of outdoor eating in the city, and how the trend has picked up over the years.

August 5, 2011 - The Washington Post

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Top Books

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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.