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Member News Articles


Arizona State University (top)

  • This spring the school’s Planning PhD program completed its first year.  Three students have been selected to begin the program in Fall 2013. The program works closely with ASU’s School of Sustainability, and also has close relationships with many of the communities in the Phoenix metropolitan area.  Resources include state of the art geographic information science laboratories and computational facilities.
  • Beginning this year, students in ASU’s Master in Urban and Environmental Planning may choose to earn an additional masters’ degree concurrently with the MUEP, in an efficient 3-year program of study.  Students may choose from a concurrent masters’ degree in Sustainability, Public Administration, or Public Policy.
  • Led by David Pijawka, professor and associate director of planning, the school is engaged in several activities centered around Native American planning: Six students from the Navajo Nation, as well as other students, are engaged in research that is evaluating land use planning in the Navajo Nation and developing guidelines for planning  at local levels.  In other initiatives, a studio involving the Havasupai Nation is being developed jointly with ASU’s American Indian Studies Program; and A strategic planning program for the Navajo – Hopi Land Commission is underway.  In a state with 66% of the land owned by Native American Tribes and with 23 tribal nations the work by, ASU's planning plays a significant and recognized role.
  • The planning program partnered with Mesa, Arizona’s 3rd-largest city, to develop a vision for a downtown urban plaza for the city.  In the spring, students in the course “Place-making in Mesa” developed recommended parameters for the gathering-place, based on socio-economic analysis, site analysis, and comparative analysis with other communities.  A fall course will continue the work on this project, using planning software CommunityViz as a tool to identify and analyze alternative scenarios for the plaza.
  • Students in a combined senior/graduate level urban planning course took on a cooperative project with Valley Forward, a key leadership organization in the Phoenix area. The project focused on identifying development scenarios for vacant parcels in the Phoenix area’s light rail corridor. After a presentation of the study’s results this spring, the leadership group (recently renamed Arizona Forward) has decided to use the students’ work as the starting point for a white paper and toolkit aimed at supporting realization of the vision for converting vacant parcels in metropolitan Phoenix into more constructive spaces.

Boston University (top)

California State University, Northridge (top)

  • Now in its fourth year, the department continued its international exchange program with two Brazilian universities (FIPSE-Brazil). Undergraduate majors Jasmin Roque, Diana Benitez and Cody Starr were exchange students to Brazil in spring 2013. Jasmin and Diana attended the Federal University of Goiás (UFG/BR) and Cody Starr enrolled in the Federal University of Uberlândia (UFU/BR). As part of the exchange, the department welcomed three Brazilian students, Leonardo Cavalcanti, Rafhael Mascarenhas and Adriana Machado from Federal University of Goias and Federal University of Uberlandia in Brazil. They spent Fall 2012 in the department taking urban studies and planning classes.
  • Students in the department engaged in a range of professional activities during the past year. Students Chris Hicks and Sam Gutierrez participated in the California Transportation Foundation’s annual Educational Symposium for students and professionals in transportation in early November 2012. They were nominated by the department and were guests of the foundation at the event. URBS 450-Urban Problem Seminar students (under the supervision of Dr. Mintesnot Woldeamanuel) presented their research work on the 37th Annual CSU, Social Science Research and Instructional Council (SCRIC) Student Research Conference on May 3, 2012 at Cal State Los Angeles. Also, URBS 480-Urban Transportation Planning students attended “Complete Streets Conference” organized by UCLA on February 28, 2013. Their participation was made possible by many generous alumni donations to the department.
  • Other students from the department were recognized for their scholarly achievements. Departmental majors Nara Gasparian and Regelio Martinez were the recipients of the James H. Ring Scholarship for 2012/13.  Both students received scholarships awards of $1000 in recognition of their academic achievements. This scholarship is named for its founder, James H. Ring, an alumni of the department (1972). Andrew Kent, a junior in the department, received a scholarship of $1,000 from the California Planning Foundation.
  • Several faculty members engaged in international professional activities. Dr. Robert Kent visited The School of Geographic Sciences at the Universidad Nacional de Costa Rica in Heredia, Costa Rica for 10 days in November 2012 as a visiting professor and curriculum advisor. Dr. Mintesnot Woldeamanuel was named World Social Science Fellow by The International Social Science Council (ISSC) and he attended a week-long seminar on Sustainable Urbanization in Quito, Ecuador in March 2013 where he also made a scholarly presentation.  Also, under the umbrella of FIPSE grant supported sustainable urban planning exchange program with Brazil, Dr. Zeynep Toker and students participated in the program and conducted a walkability assessment of neighborhoods in Goiania and Uberlandia in June 2013.
  • Kurt Christiansen, Urban Studies and Planning alumni was honored for his outstanding service to CSUN at the 2012 California State University Northridge (CSUN) volunteer service awards ceremony. Kurt who graduated from CSUN in 1985 with a bachelor’s degree in Urban Studies and Planning has been an indefatigable supporter of the department. He is currently the Director of Economic and Community Development for the City of Azusa. He has volunteered his time with Junior Achievement, AIDS Walk Los Angeles, the Boy Scouts of America, and the American Planning Association.
  • Raul Bocanegra (D-Pacoima), a lecturer in the department, was elected to the State Assembly in November 2012 to represent California’s 39th Assembly District, which includes the communities of Pacoima, San Fernando, Arleta, Mission Hills, Sylmar, North Hollywood, Lake View Terrace, Los Angeles, Northeast Granada Hills, Sunland-Tujunga, and Sun Valley. Raul taught URBS 380 (Los Angeles, past, present and future).

Cleveland State University (top)

  • Professors Mittie Davis Jones, Sanda Kaufman, Wendy Kellogg and Dennis Keating participated in the AESOP/ACSP Joint Congress in Dublin, Ireland in July, 2013
  • Professor Stephanie Ryberg-Webster presented on "Preserving Cleveland's African-American Heritage at the 2013 Society for American City and Regional History conference in Toronto in October, 2013
  • Professor Haifeng Qian presented on Regional Economic Development at the 2013 annual meeting of the Association of American Geographers and his article entitled "Diversity versus tolerance" was published in Urban Studies, Vol. 50: 2718-2735 (2013). He is PI on a grant on "Skills, regions, and entrepreneurship" from the Regional Studies Association
  • Professor Alan Weinstein co-authored the 2013 update of "Federal Land Use Law and Litigation" and presented on "Regulating Adult Entertainment Businesses" at the March, 2013 International Municipal Lawyers' national
  • Professor Norm Krumholz was presented in September, 2013 with the APA Ohio 2013 Award for Outstanding Planner

Columbia University (top)

  • This fall’s Advanced Urban Planning studio was tasked with studying post-Sandy recovery and developing a set of recommendations for Manhattan Community District 1. Community Board 1 serves five major, mixed-use sub-districts in Lower Manhattan: Financial district, Seaport / Civic center, Tribeca, Battery Park, and World Trade Center. The nearby Governors, Ellis, and Liberty Islands also fall under the jurisdiction of CB1. The studio group spent the semester compiling data and conducting interviews then analyzing these resources to develop nine recommendations for Community Board 1 to better address the needs of their susceptible populations. The recommendations are framed around four stages of resiliency planning – Preparedness, Response, Recovery, and Mitigation. These four interdependent stages create a continuous cycle of activity, which leads to effective resiliency planning. Among the recommendations are resident education, communication strategies, and the designation of a Disaster Orientation Logistics Location. Read the full report here:
  • On Monday, October 7 GSAPP Events presented ‘Midtown East Redux,’ an event discussing the controversial East Midtown Rezoning proposal. UP Program Director Lance Freeman and Assistant Professor David King participated in the panel alongside Kate Ascher, Lise Anne Couture, Andrew Dolkart, and responder Michael Kimmelman of the New York Times. One month later, city council blocked this plan to transform East Midtown into a similar density and building typology of Lower Manhattan.
  • Columbia University hosted the American Planning Association NY Metro Chapter’s biennial conference on Friday, November 8th. Over 320 people attended the day long symposium, themed ‘Planning in the Wake of the Storm.’ The conference featured sessions on post disaster planning and resiliency efforts around our region. 
  • This fall, GSAPP’s Urban China Network became officially recognized as a student group by the university. UCN was founded in May 2013 by a group of students interested in urban planning issues in China. This semester, UCN hosted various lectures including, Xinmin Hua on The History of Land Ownership in China, Tingwei Zhang on Chinese Urban Planning: Practice and Theory, and Zhi Liu on How China’s Urban Development Model affects Land, Urban Infrastructure Investment, Housing Markets, and Local Debt.
  • Professor Clara Irazabal’s edited book, Transbordering Latin Americanisms: Liminal Places, Cultures, and Powers (T)Here (New York, London: Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, 2014) was published this fall. ‘This book examines transborder Latin American sociocultural and spatial conditions across the globe and at different scales, from gendered and racialized individuals to national and transnational organizations.’
Florida Atlantic University (top)
  • As a continued effort on participating in Place-Making and Civic Engagement activities, the FAU School of Urban and Regional Planning organized Park(ing) Day West Palm Beach 2013, an international urban guerilla event held on September 20th, with the collaborative effort of the City of West Palm Beach Downtown Development Authority, Lejobart, FAU Planning Society and other local businesses and private firms. They all came together for a one day installation of a temporary park that substituted 5 on-street parking spots on Clematis Street. The event successfully showcased a modular parklet with interactive games, a garden and lounging areas.
  • The School of Urban and Regional Planning welcomes Dr. Jesse Saginor as an Associate Professor. He holds a Ph.D. in Urban Studies and Public Affairs with a concentration on real estate and economic development from Cleveland State University. He also has a Master’s degree in Public Administration from the Ohio State University. Dr. Saginor worked as an Assistant Professor for seven years at Texas A&M University, where he taught in the undergraduate Urban and Regional Planning Program and the Master of Land and Property Development Program. His current and future research focuses on alternative funding partnership mechanisms for infrastructure development and redevelopment, housing market dynamics related to hurricane-prone coastal areas, eminent domain, community-based market analysis approaches, and immigration-based economic development policy.
  • Senior Fellow Frank Schnidman co-chaired the 29th annual Land Use Institute for the American Law Institute. This 2-day continuing legal education program was held in San Francisco in August and attended by almost 100 attorneys. FAU School of Urban and Regional Planning is the annual co-sponsor of the event and Frank Schnidman has been the organizer and co-chair for the past 29 years.
  • In the spring of 2013, the City Council of Boca Raton approved and implemented a pilot study based on the work of graduate students from the School of Urban and Regional Planning. With the guidance of Dr. Diana Mitsova, the students collaborated with the Green Living Advisory Board of the City of Boca Raton to design a Neighborhood Certification System as a means to evaluate Boca Raton residents' environmental awareness and encourage sustainable living. 
  • The School of Urban and Regional Planning is expanding its interdisciplinary approach by continuing to collaborate with other departments. Urban Planning students are working together with students in Computer Engineering and Multimedia Studies to develop Android Apps that will focus on several Urban and Environmental Planning topics.

Florida State University (top)

Georgia Institute of Technology (top)

Indiana University of Pennsylvania (top)

  • The BS Regional Planning Program (RPP) and the Department Geography and Regional Planning at IUP is excited to welcome two colleagues who joined the department in Fall 2013 as Assistant Professors; Drs. Sudeshna Ghosh and Zhongwei Liu. Dr. Sudeshna Ghosh received her PhD in Regional Development Planning from the University of Cincinnati in May 2013. She holds a Master of City Planning from the Indian Institute of Technology, and BA in Architecture from Bengal Engineering and Science University, India. Her research and teaching interests include economic development planning, community development planning, urban and regional economics, land use planning, and geographic information systems/science. Her dissertation research applied advanced GIS and spatial analysis methods to assess the land use impacts of large-scale employers in small town and rural communities. Dr. Zhongwei Liu received his PhD in Geography and an MS in Applied Statistics from the University of Cincinnati in 2008. He also holds an MS in Geography and BA in Economics from Peking University and Shandong University, China, respectively. Dr. Zhongwei Liu brings expertise in environmental and watershed-based planning as well as geospatial techniques. Prior to joining IUP, Dr. Liu was Executive Director, GIS and Remote Sensing Core Lab, University of Nevada, Las Vegas and also worked in two Postdoctoral Research appointments at the Universities of Nevada and Florida, respectively.
  • IUP RPP and the Department celebrate and congratulate Dr. Richard Hoch, AICP, CEP for his tenure and promotion to Associate Professor in August 2013.
  • IUP RPP enthusiastically welcomes Jeffrey Raykes, AICP, senior planner, Department of Economic Development and Planning, Indiana County this Fall 2013 as an Adjunct Professor to teach an upper division Regional Planning course Community Participation and Civic Engagement.
  • Dr. Whit Watt’s Planning Design Studio II class project “Lincoln Avenue Corridor”, Latrobe, PA has been nominated for Pennsylvania APA student award. Winners will be announced at the annual meeting of APA-PA Chapter, October 20-22, 2013.
  • Dr. Richard Hoch recently submitted the final report in fulfillment of the grant award from the Colcom Foundation ( in collaboration with The Center for Coalfield Justice (  The report, titled, “Community Indicators of Environmental Justice” is a 52 page document with over 150 maps and 50 tables that identifies 49 variables in effort to characterize environmental impacts from resource extraction and other demographic, social, and economic indicators by normalizing the data and enabling comparative rankings.  This is the fourth report delivered by Hoch for the overarching project called Landscape Today. The Landscape Today Initiative is used for outreach and education of local citizens and decision-makers within the longwall coalfields of Pennsylvania (primarily Greene and Washington Counties).  It is also establishing baseline data for future research. 

Iowa State University (top)

  • Professor Francis Owusu appointed interim department chair- Professor Francis Owusu is now the interim chair of the Department of Community and Regional Planning. He replaces Professor Douglas Johnston, who accepted a new position as chair of the Department of Landscape Architecture at the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry.
  • CRP Department is the home of Community Development (C. Dev) online Masters Program- The CRP Department at ISU is now the home of the Community Development (C. Dev) Online Master's Degree program. This fully online, cutting edge, trans-disciplinary, and inter-institutional program is part of the Great Plains Interactive Distance Education Alliance (GPIDEA) – an academic alliance that offers online graduate and undergraduate coursework and program options in high demand professional fields. The program have five participating universities (Iowa State University, Kansas State University, North Dakota State University, South Dakota State University, and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln) and is ideal for students seeking a professional career in Community Development as well as Community Development practitioners who wish to augment their training (See
  • Professor Carlton Basmajian writes about Atlanta's urban sprawl and also about cemeteries- In his new book, Atlanta Unbound: Enabling Sprawl through Policy and Planning (Temple University Press, 2013), Professor Basmajian demonstrates how metropolitan Atlanta’s regional planning groups accelerated the sprawl they were trying to control. Professor Basmajian is also one of the co-authors of a recently published APA Planning Advisory Service Report (#572) titled Planning for the Deceased. He has previously published on the subject in Journal of the American Planning Association and Landscape and Urban Planning.
  • Professor Jane Rongerude works with Graduate students in planning efforts in Des Moines- For the third year in a row, Professor Jane Rongerude and the graduate planning studio are collaborating with the Neighborhood Planning Division in the City of Des Moines. This fall, students are working with two low-income urban core neighborhoods to update their neighborhood plans for the first time in 20 years. During the past two decades, residents in these neighborhoods have worked hard to improve their communities despite growing disinvestment and continuing physical decay. The class will be working in the city offices and on in the ground in the neighborhoods to conduct research, gather resident feedback, and build relationships between the neighborhood residents and others community stakeholders.  Professor Rongerude is also leading a two-year study for the Polk County Housing Trust Fund assessing the availability of Affordable Housing in Polk County. This summer, the release of the phase II report coincided with the Trust Fund’s biannual affordable housing bus tour, which was built on the data from the report. Assisted by graduate student Eric Ports and recent bachelor’s graduate Josh Hellyer, Rongerude led the bus tour, educating interested housing professionals, policy-makers, and advocates about the importance of considering the relationship between housing, transportation, and access to services and job centers when determining where to place affordable housing.
  • Professor Biswa Das’ outreach initiatives for Iowa communities- As part of ISU Extension and Outreach Community and Economic Development, Professor Biswa Das is embarking a new public finance initiative. Using city and county finance data, analysis is being conducted and annual situation and trends reports will be developed for each of the 946 cities and 99 counties. The educational outreach program is designed to provide an alternate perspective about the financial health and relative performance of Iowa cities and counties. Professor Das also is part of the team working with the City of Waukon, a northeast Iowa community in Allamakee County, to develop a comprehensive plan. In addition, Professor Das is working with a group of stakeholders in the City of Ottumwa, Iowa to develop an action plan and identify strategies for addressing the housing issues in the community. This project a follow up of an undergraduate planning studio, under the direction of Professor Susan Bradbury, that conducted housing needs assessment of the region and proposed recommendations for addressing housing market challenges in the community.   

Massachusetts Insitute of Technology (top)

  • The MIT School of Architecture + Planning has named Jennifer Pahlka, founder of Code for America, winner of the 2013-2014 Kevin Lynch Award. The award is presented biannually for outstanding scholarship and practice in urban design, planning and landscape design.

Tufts University (top)

  • Upon turning 40, the Department of Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning (UEP) hosted a series of academic and celebratory events. In spring 2013, students, faculty, and our community friends exchanged ideas in multiple colloquium presentations and discussions that featured prominent scholars, practitioners, and UEP alumni. On the evening of April 27, UEP continued its celebration of 40 years of educating “practical visionaries” in a gala at the Charles Hotel in Cambridge. Prior to the dinner and dance party, which was attended by more than 200 UEP community members, including alumni, current students, faculty, administrators, and staff, we gathered for a spirited keynote speech by Professor Robert Bullard, widely viewed as the “father of environmental justice.” The final celebratory event was hosted by Tufts President Anthony Monaco at Gifford House on September 24. We were buoyed by all the wonderful comments and praise for UEP offered by President Monaco, Provost David Harris, and Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, Joanne Berger-Sweeney. 
  • We have received final university approval for the dual degree (MA/MPH) between UEP’s MA in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning and The Tufts School of Medicine’s Master of Public Health. The dual degree program will require, at a minimum, three years of full-time study. Students will split their time evenly between both programs, enrolling for three semesters, each in UEP and in the MPH program. Two faculty coordinators, one from UEP (Prof. Mary Davis) and another from MPH (Prof. Doug Brugge), will serve as the joint advisors to enrolled students, ensuring that students satisfy the graduation requirements of their respective programs. Interested students should email Prof. Davis ( or UEP administrator (
  • The American Planning Association - Massachusetts Chapter (APA-MA) Awards Committee recently selected Urban Farming in Boston: A Survey ofOpportunities to receive a Student Project Award this year. This outstanding student project was completed for a client, The Trust for Public Land, as part of the spring 2013 Field Projects course and is now in the running for a national award from APA. Congratulations to UEP students Tida Infahsaeng, Ian Jakus, Denise Chin, Valerie Oorthuys, and to faculty advisors Rusty Russell, Penn Loh and Justin Hollander.
  • Current student Becca Schofield has won a competition sponsored by the Expanding Opportunities Committee (EOC) of the Commonwealth Housing Task Force. Here is part of a notification email we received from the committee co-chairs: “…we received three interesting submissions (one each from Tufts, Harvard Business School, and one from MIT) and have selected the submission from Tufts student Rebecca Schofield as the winner…. Her proposal involves developing a framework for examining the housing needs and interests of certain protected classes in Massachusetts' small multifamily rental housing and how they compare to the interests of others in the housing field including private owners, developers, CDCs, CDFIs, and policymakers….”
  • On March 4, 2013, President Barack Obama nominated UEP alumna Gina McCarthy (MA 1981) to head the Environmental Protection Agency. She was confirmed by the Senate on July 18, 2013. Congratulations to her!
  • UEP faculty James Jennings and Penn Loh, student Jennifer Molina, and alumna Melissa Colon have been appointed to the transitional teams of the incoming Boston mayor Martin Walsh. Another UEP student, John Barros (himself a mayoral candidate), is one of six people leading the transitional efforts.
  • Julian Agyeman’s new book is called Introducing Just Sustainabilities: Policy, Planning and Practice (Zed Books, 2013). This unique and insightful text offers an exploration of the origins and subsequent development of the concept of "just sustainability." Introducing Just Sustainabilities discusses key topics such as food justice, sovereignty and urban agriculture; community, space, place(making) and spatial justice; the democratization of our streets and public spaces; how to create culturally inclusive spaces; intercultural cities and social inclusion; "green collar jobs" and the just transition as well as alternative economic models such as co-production. On his sabbatical in Spring 2014, Julian will be working on two book contracts, one is called (In)Complete Streets (Routledge) which critiques the cookie cutter approach to changing streets in favor of a more nuanced approach based around community narratives of place, and a book called Sharing Cities (MIT Press) which looks to a broadening of sharing, away from simply cars and bikes as a way to increase equity, build social capital and decrease resource usage. Rachel Bratt will be retiring at the end of the 2013-14 academic year, following 37 years at Tufts, including nearly 10 years as chair of UEP. Rachel is currently on leave and has been appointed as a Senior Fellow in Housing Studies at Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies. In addition, she is collaborating on a comparative study of the current challenges facing nonprofit housing organizations with colleagues in Australia, England, and the Netherlands, as well as with the other members of the U.S. team, located in California and Illinois. Justin Hollander was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure this spring. Earlier in the year, he was awarded an internal Tufts Collaborates grant to do research with Prof. Tama Leventhal (Tufts - Child Development Department) and Dr. Erin Graves (Federal Reserve Bank of Boston) around the topic of family/child outcomes for shrinking neighborhoods in the City of New Bedford. Justin is writing a book tentatively titled Cognitive Architecture (with Ann Sussman and to be published in 2014 by Routledge) exploring the ways that the latest advances in cognitive science provide a new foundation for the design and planning of the built environment. With a grant from the Abell Foundation, he is working with the Department of City Planning in Baltimore to develop decision-models to aid in managing vacant and abandoned property (along with his co-investigator, Michael Johnson, of the University of Massachusetts, Boston). Shelly Krimsky continues another year as a visiting professor at his alma mater Brooklyn College, while on leave from Tufts. In June, his 12th book was published by Skyhorse Publishing Company, titled Biotechnology in Our Lives: What Modern Genetics Can Tell You about Assisted Reproduction, Human Behavior, and Personalized Medicine, and Much More. His co-author is Jeremy Gruber, JD, the president and executive director of the Council for Responsible Genetics. Weiping Wu assumed the position of UEP department chair in August 2013. In October, she chaired the Regional Cooperation Forum at the Pujiang Innovation Forum co-sponsored by China’s Ministry of Science and Technology and Shanghai Municipal Government. She has been awarded a research fellowship by the China Program of Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, for a project titled Long-Term Investment Financing for China’s Urban Infrastructure.

University at Buffalo, SUNY (top)

  • Samina Raja, associate professor of urban and regional planning and an internationally regarded food systems researcher, has won the 2014 William R. and June Dale Prize for Excellence in Urban and Regional Planning. The 2014 award, given by Cal Poly Pomona’s Department of Urban and Regional Planning, recognizes scholars engaged with the theme, “We Are What We Eat: Food Systems and the Healthy City.” Raja will receive the Dale Scholar Prize of $5,000 and spend two-and-a-half days at Cal Poly Pomona, meeting with students and speaking at a colloquium. Read more.
  • Department of Urban and Regional Planning faculty members Robert Mark Silverman and Li Yin, along with Kelly Patterson, assistant professor of social work at the University at Buffalo, have been awarded federal funding to develop an analytic tool for affordable housing development in shrinking cities. The $125,000 research grant for their project, Sustainable Affordable Housing in Shrinking US Cities: Developing an Analytic Tool for Sitting Subsidized Housing and Evaluating HUD Program Outcomes will focus on identifying the boundaries of neighborhoods of opportunity near shrinking core cities located in the 10 fastest declining city populations between 2000 and 2010. Learn more.
  • Researchers at the Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access (IDeA Center) in UB's School of Architecture and Planning are working with the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority to test features that could make public transit better for all riders. For five years, researchers at the IDeA Center have been inviting volunteers with disabilities to take part in everyday activities like boarding, disembarking, paying fares and getting seated on the indoor vehicle. This year the two universities received a second, $4.6 million NIDRR (National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research) grant to continue their work, which involves everything from exploring how real-time trip information can empower accessible travel, to studying how vehicle and sidewalk improvements can reduce reliance on paratransit, which is significantly more costly than public transit. Follow up on the IDeA Center’s website.
  • Dean Robert G. Shibley, who led the master planning process for Buffalo’s comprehensive plan and downtown plan, shares his thoughts on the Rust Belt city’s rebirth. “For the first time in decades, attitudes are bullish,” says Robert G. Shibley, dean of the School of Architecture and Planning and one of the region’s pre-eminent urban thinkers. In this Q&A, Shibley talks about how he kept moving forward through decades of cynicism and negativity, how Buffalo is changing now and what Buffalo’s revival means in the context of the Rust Belt as a whole. Read the full article.
  • The UB Regional Institute/Urban Design Project in the School of Architecture and Planning is guiding dozens of community groups in developing a Regional Plan for Sustainable Development for Erie and Niagara Counties. The effort, called One Region Forward, is funded through a $2 million HUD sustainability planning grant. Last fall, One Region Forward convened a series of Community Congress workshops to involve citizens in building a plan for a more sustainable Buffalo Niagara and learn about how Buffalo Niagara might look 40 years from now if today’s trends continue in how we use our land, develop our neighborhoods, commute to work or grow and consume our food. Participants then created alternative development scenarios for the region – for instance, mapping the neighborhoods where housing investment is needed most, or identifying more sustainable land use strategies. Find out more about the Community Congress events and the One Region Forward effort.
  • Henry Louis Taylor, Jr., professor of urban and regional planning, is among a distinguished group of individuals being inducted into the Service Honor Roll of the Urban Affairs Association, an international professional organization for urban scholars, researchers, and public service professionals. The honor roll recognizes individuals for their commitment, intellect and energy in service to the organization, which is dedicated to creating interdisciplinary spaces for intellectual and practical discussions about urban life. Find out more.
  • Check out our fall 2013 B/a+p Magazine to learn more about the people, programs and academic experience at the School of Architecture and Planning. Read it here:

University of Colorado, Denver (top)

  • The program rolled out an innovative new curriculum in Fall 2013 and hired three new faculty members – Assistant Professors Carrie Makarewicz and Andrew Rumbach and Associate Professor Austin Troy – all of whom will join Assistant Professor Carey McAndrews who started at CU Denver in Fall 2012. The program also launched three new interdisciplinary teaching, research, engagement and funding initiatives in Healthy Communities, Urban Revitalization and Regional Sustainability and created a new MURP Alumni Association for our 1300 alumni and a Scholarship Fund with an emphasis on increasing diversity in our student body. The MURP program was also reaccredited through December 2016 and, most recently, we launched a new website, LinkedIn group, Twitter feed, Facebook page and a Planners Network group.
  • Chair and Associate Professor Jeremy Németh received tenure and promotion in June 2013. His recent articles have appeared in JAPA, JPER, Environment and Planning A and B, Urban Studies, Urban Affairs Review, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Journal of Urban Design and Housing Policy Debate.
  • Associate Professor Austin Troy’s book The Very Hungry City (Yale University Press, 2012) was designated book of the year by the Baltimore Ecosystem Study and he gave a TEDx talk in Washington DC on the book in October 2013. In the past year, Dr. Troy has given keynote addresses at multiple universities and conferences and published several articles; his article on the relationship between tree canopy and crime rates was covered extensively in the popular media, including the Boston Globe. 
  • Assistant Professor Carey McAndrews published four articles in 2013 focusing on transportation, health disparities, road safety, climate change and risk. These articles appeared in Journal of Journal of Environmental Planning and Management, Science, Technology and Human Values and Accident Analysis and Preventionand in an edited book published by MN and NY Campus Compact.
  • Assistant Professor Carrie Makarewicz presented on an economic development panel at the AESOP/ACSP Joint Congress in Dublin, Ireland in July 2013. Her article “Vouchers, Magnet Schools, Charter Schools and Options: Analyzing the Effects of School and Housing Choices on Mode Choice to School,” was published in the July 2013 issue of Transportation Research Record.
  • Assistant Professor Andrew Rumbach helped launch a department- and college-wide initiative called Resilient Colorado which will assist Colorado communities with recover from recent flash floods in the state. In November 2013, Dr. Rumbach will present a paper on disaster risk in small cities at the National University of Singapore's workshop on disaster governance.
  • Instructor Ken Schroeppel was named Director of Professional Engagement for the MURP program. Ken leads the public on monthly tours of the Denver Union Station project and has given dozens of presentations on Downtown development and revitalization to community/business/academic organizations. Ken maintains two blogs – Denver Urbanism and Denver Infill – which receive over 70,000 visits each month.
  • Instructor Jennifer Steffel Johnson’s Urban Housing course led three affordable housing charrettes at Housing Colorado Now! Conference in Vail which brought students together with design, finance, construction and development professionals and a real client to design innovative housing solutions on three sites around the state. Johnson also led four MURP courses in partnering with Welby, CO, an unincorporated town surrounded on all sides by industrial areas. The students’ work focused on vulnerable populations and their final products included comprehensive walkability studies, demographic/socioeconomic profiles, economic forecasts, frameworks plans, zoning proposals, and community inventories. Several hundred community members and local officials attended the final community meeting and presentation.

University of Kansas (top)

  • After 40 years of service to urban planning education at the University of Kansas, Professor James Mayo retired and moved on to new adventures in a new home in Albuquerque.   Mayo was chair of the department for over 10 years before turning things over to current chair, Stacey Swearingen White.  Before leaving, he was honored with the title of “professor emeritus”.
  •  This fall we welcome a new faculty member, assistant professor Ward Lyles.  Most recently Ward was a post-doctoral research associate at the Center for Sustainable Community Design at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Institute for the Environment.  Ward describes his research and teaching interests as being at “the intersection of people, the built environment, and the natural environment.” He will strengthen the department’s and the University’s emphasis on sustainability with his work on climate adaptation, quality plans, and planning for resilient communities.  He received his PhD in 2012 from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Department of City and Regional Planning.  He will be teaching Quantitative Methods I, environmental planning courses, and Planning the American City.
  • In January of 2013, Prof. Kirk McClure was one of the first two ever recipients of the School of Architecture, Design, and Planning's Research Impact Award at the University of Kansas.  At the awards ceremony, he explained how his research is all about making affordable housing programs work better.
  •  Associate Professor Bonnie Johnson was recently elected to the position of Professional Development Officer of the Kansas Chapter of the American Planning Association.

University of Maryland (top)

  • The National Center for Smart Growth (NCSG) recently established the Purple Line Corridor Coalition (PLCC), an initiative aimed to leverage economic opportunities while retaining community identities alongthe Maryland Transit Authority’s proposed new Metro-DC transit corridor. Spearheaded by Director of NCSG Gerrit Knaap, the coalition provides community, government and private business leaders with a forum for cross collaboration and idea exchange, access to key research and case studies and helps guide their efforts and expertise. Read the full story here.
  • This summer, an urban planning studio took a 20,000-foot look at the University of Maryland and its home of College Park, as they plan for future revitalization and look to strengthen the city/university, or “Town-Gown,” relationship. Led by Urban Studies and Planning (URSP) Program director Jim Cohen, planning graduate students Eli Knaap and Aviva Brown examined the types of impediments facing UMD and College Park in their path towards creating a more vibrant and livable “university district” for students, faculty, staff and city-dwellers.  Read more here.
  • The University of Maryland National Center for Smart Growth (NCSG) will resume broadcasting webinars live this fall through the Center’s website in an effort to bring smart growth experts, compelling studies and practical planning tools to a global audience. The NCSG webinars focus specifically on a broad range of planning topics. The fall slate will host a number of speakers from the University and beyond. David Rusk, former Mayor of Albuquerque and author of the book, Cities without Suburbs, will kick off the series October 2, 2013. Details, plus a full schedule of speakers will be available on the NCSG website. For those who can’t tune in live, the Center offers stream-able versions of each lecture on its website.
  • Last spring, a new graduate-level urban planning course focusing on planning technologies debuted at the University of Maryland. Developed by Dr. Chao Liu, URSP 688L: Planning Technologies provides an introduction of several basic technologies needed by planners, with a special focus on GIS, as well as concepts and knowledge to evaluate a variety of technologies (blogs, social-networking tools, video-sharing, on-line survey, etc.). This fall, in collaboration with her colleague Eli Knaap, Lui redesigned the class to incorporate blended learning techniques such as online lectures and problem-solving webinar discussions with peers. Also launched this past academic year was a new course on planning for an aging society, developed by Associate Professor Alex Chen.
  • After a successful first run last spring, UMD’s Urban Planning Program will launch Code for Community II this October, a University-wide competition that challenges undergraduate students to develop a mobile or web-based app that addresses a challenge in a Maryland community. Working under the guidance of community partners and technology experts, student teams bring their ideas for bettering their state to virtual life. Last year’s winning app helped users easily pinpoint facilities—from swimming pools to campsites—within Prince George’s County Parks and Recreation Department. While the contest promises students the thrill of competition and rush of “cause innovation,” this year it offers a new enticement: teams will go head-to-head for cash prizes. Learn more about Code for Community here.  
  • Professor Marie Howland will be presenting an overview of the economic health of Montgomery County, MD in October to a gathering of 75 regional elected officials and business leaders this October. The presentation, part of an economic climate roundtable sponsored by Montgomery Business Development Corporation, will deliver vital information researched and compiled through the University of Maryland University Center for Economic Development.

University of Massachusetts, Amherst (top)

  • Regional Planning gets a new home! The University of Massachusetts, Amherst announces funding for a new Integrated Design Building. The building is planned to be LEED-certified with advanced sustainability technologies, and will house the Departments of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning, Architecture, and Green Building. Designers are being selected this fall, and the building will open in 2017.
  • UMass Planning hosts the only US showing of the international exhibition - Post-Oil City: The History of the Urban Future, curated by the Goethe Institute. The exhibition presents models, computer animations, video clips and documentation exploring 11 innovative urban projects in Asia, Africa, and America, and their connections to utopias of the past. The exhibition demonstrates positive, possible, contextualized and sustainable answers to the challenges posed by climate change, a limited supply of fossil fuels, economic recession, and global systemic crisis. The exhibition has previously been shown in South Africa, Canada, Ethiopia, Japan, and India.
  • The department has a new Graduate Certificate in Cultural Landscape Management. The Cultural Landscape Management Certificate prepares students for professional positions managing places with significance and meaning for those who create them, live in them, or experience them as visitors. Often cultural landscapes are “protected” landscapes, recognized as World Heritage Sites, National Parks, National Heritage Areas, or bounded and designated in some other way. The certificate is available to degree and non-degree students, and requires only 15 credits of coursework.
  • Students prepare the first climate adaptation chapter for a community Master Plan in Massachusetts. As part of the Regional Planning Studio, a team of students analyzed the physical and social vulnerabilities and climate projections for coastal Marshfield, Massachusetts. Students developed recommendations for physical design and regulations in the most vulnerable areas. 
  • Professor Elisabeth Hamin and her co-PIs are awarded a 5-year, $737,000 grant from the National Science Foundation. The project, called the Sustainable Adaptive Gradients in the coastal Environment (SAGE) Research Coordination Network, will develop a transdisciplinary learning network of Caribbean and U.S. Northeast researchers and policymakers focusing on hazard-resilient coastal infrastructure.
  • Assistant Professor Flavia Montenegro-Menezes receives UMass President’s Creative Economy Initiatives Award. Her proposal “Participatory Asset Mapping: Sustainable Planning and Development in Holyoke” will develop a tested and transferable approach to integrating unique cultural assets into regional planning.
  • UMass planning students study in Goiana, Brazil, for a semester as part of a funded exchange program, and Goiana students come to UMass for a semester of their graduate or undergraduate studies. This program is in its fourth year, and has been highly successful at integrating students into their international experiences.

University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill (top)

  • THE SCHOOL THAT JACK BUILT: City and Regional Planning at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1945–2012 tells the fascinating story of the talented, energetic, and far-sighted faculty, students, and university administrators, as well as the circumstances and opportunities that shaped the sometimes rocky evolution of the department. The Department of City and Regional Planning (DCRP) at UNC-Chapel Hill was the seventh university planning program in the country and the first to be based in the social sciences.  Boldly initiated in 1945 on a university campus with no architecture or engineering program, DCRP was entrusted to a young administrator who had not yet completed his graduate degree in planning at MIT.  Despite its atypical start, DCRP would establish a solid foothold by the early 1950s and grow in size and reputation over the next six decades. We hope that the story of this planning education enterprise will be of value to those who studied and taught within its walls, perhaps providing an impetus to reflect on past efforts, friends, and experiences while appreciating a good story.  We also hope that story will be of interest to friends of DCRP and perhaps to planning education historians looking for insights into the evolution of planning education. More information about this book can be found at:
  • Each year, the editors of the Journal of Planning Education and Research (JPER) appoint a committee to select the best paper in the previous volume of the journal for the Chester Rapkin Award. The Chester Rapkin Award was awarded to DCRP’s T. William Lester for his article titled “Labor Standards and Local Economic Development--Do Living Wage Provisions Harm Economic Growth?” (Vol. 32, issue 3,
  • Sustainable Development Projects: Integrated Design Development & Regulation by David R. Godschalk, Emil E. Malizia. Development projects are the building blocks of urban growth. Put enough of the right projects together in the right way, and you have sustainable cities.  But getting the pieces to stack up takes a feat of coordination and cooperation.  In our market economy, developers, designers, and planners tend to operate in silos, each focused on its own piece of the puzzle. Sustainable Development Projects shows how these three groups can work together to build stronger cities. It starts with a blueprint for a development triad that balances sound economics, quality design, and the public good. A step-by-step description of the development process explains how and when planners can most effectively regulate new projects, while a glossary of real estate terms gives all the project participants a common language. Learn more at:
  • Now seeking submissions for the 2014 issue: “Innovative Collaborations in Planning.” With the recent recession leading to diminished resources and tighter government budgets, planners need new and innovative ways for serving and impacting communities. Carolina Planning – the oldest student-run planning publication in the country – seeks to bridge the gap between urban planning professionals and academics, with the goal of providing original articles, case studies, interviews of relevance and interest to both audiences. Visit for submission details.
University of Oklahoma (top)

University of Oregon (top)

  • The University of Oregon’s Community Service Center (CSC) received the Special Achievement in Planning award from the Oregon Chapter of the American Planning Association on May 30th. This award recognizes the depth and breadth of the programs of the CSC and their impact on the state over the past 40 years.  The programs of the CSC include Community Planning Workshop (CPW), Resource Assistance for Rural Environments (RARE), Oregon Partnership for Disaster Resilience (OPDR) and the Economic Development Administration University Center (EDAUC).  This award coincides with the 40th anniversary of the passage of Senate Bill 100, Oregon’s landmark land use law.  The CSC’s first project, via CPW, addressed Senate Bill 100 in 1973.
  • The Community Planning Workshop (CPW) is helping five small Oregon cities develop local programs that protect wetlands, stream corridors, and surface water quality. The work is part of a pilot project funded by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality that links under-resourced communities with the university, providing technical assistance to the communities and service learning opportunities to students. The approach focuses on identifying and addressing the unique challenges and needs of each community and therefore differs from the more common tactic of adopting generic model codes. The project includes drafting regulatory ordinances for two communities, the most common approach to protecting water quality. It has also involved innovative community-based outreach programs to accompany regulation. In other communities, the work has resulted in the development of a unique non-regulatory surface water management program that relies heavily on water quality education and voluntary protection efforts. The non-regulatory surface water management program is the first of its kind for cities in Oregon.
  • Two new tenure-track faculty join the Planning, Public Policy and Management Department for Fall 2013: Nicole Ngo, and Rebecca Lewis. Dr. Ngo received her Ph.D. in Sustainable Development at Columbia University and her B.A. in Economics and B.S. in Earth and Environmental Science from the University of California, Irvine.  Her research focuses on the economic and health impacts of environmental problems in urban areas in the U.S. and sub-Saharan Africa.  She has collaborated with the Center for Sustainable Urban Development at the Earth Institute, the University of Nairobi, and the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). Dr. Lewis is a faculty affiliate of the National Center for Smart Growth Research and Education at the University of Maryland.  Dr. Lewis was a 2010 Lincoln Institute of Land Policy C. Lowell Harriss Dissertation Fellow and received 2012 Barclay Gibbs Jones Award for the Best Dissertation in Planning from the American Collegiate Schools of Planning for her dissertation evaluating the efficacy of smart growth in Maryland.  Her research broadly focuses on state land use policy, local comprehensive plan quality, state and local finance, infrastructure and urban form.  She teaches courses in land use and comprehensive planning, community infrastructure, plan implementation and sustainable development.

University of Sheffield (top) 

University of Southern California (top)

  • The USC METRANS Transportation Center received two recent grants from the U.S. Department of Transportation that, along with match funding, total $6.24-million to conduct research on how to improve urban transportation and freight movement. METRANS also hosted the International Urban Freight Conference in Long Beach in October to explore the many ways in which the movement of freight affects urban areas, and how that movement can become both more efficient and sustainable worldwide.
  • Professor Marlon Boarnet co-authored a study analyzing the impact of Los Angeles’ Exposition Light Rail Line. Residents living within a half-mile of the new station traveled 10 to 12 fewer miles daily by car – a 40 percent decrease – after the new rail line opened, according to the study. That same group also tripled its rate of rail travel, from an average of one daily rail trip per household before the Expo Line opened to almost three daily household rail trips after it opened.
  • Associate Professor Lisa Schweitzer has been appointed an associate editor of the Journal of the American Planning Association.
  • In an effort to increase the pipeline of minority students going into PhD programs in the field of planning, the USC Price School of Public Policy and ACSP co-sponsored the first-ever Summer Predoctoral Workshop for Students of Color this past July.
  • Bill Fulton, USC Price senior fellow and City of San Diego planning director, testified in Sacramento at the California State Assembly's Select Committee on Community and Neighborhood Development on Aug. 28.
  • Planning Ph.D. student Sarah Mawhorter was interviewed on KPCC-FM Southern California Public Radio about the gentrification of Boyle Heights and other neighborhoods around Los Angeles. Mawhorter's research focus is on the gentrification patterns of Echo Park and Highland Park.
  • Associate Professor Elizabeth Currid-Halkett was as a panelist at a recent keynote event – titled "What is the Current State of New York’s Creative Economy?" – at City University of New York.

University of Texas- Arlington (top)

• The University’s Institute of Urban Studies’ City of Saginaw Master Parks, Recreation, and Open Space Plan received a 2013 student planning project award from the Midwest Texas Section of the American Planning Association.
• Recent Master of City and Regional Planning graduate Kelsey Berry received a 2013 student planning project award from the Midwest Section of the American Planning Association for her professional report titled “Knox Street and the Complete Streets Initiative.”
• The North Central Texas Section of the American Planning Association awarded its 2014 Scholarship to current student Reza Sardari. Reza is a Ph.D. in Urban Planning and Public Policy student in the School of Urban and Public Affairs at UT Arlington.
• The Institute of Urban Studies partnered with the town of Bartonville, TX, to conduct a community survey that aims to help assess residents’ satisfaction with the quality of services they receive.
• The Student Planning Association at UT Arlington had an active spring, presenting multiple opportunities for members to learn, engage and network. The association’s events included presentations on finding data, land use planning, transportation planning and writing ordinances. Area professionals and academic researchers shared insights on these topics with the students.

  • University of Wisconsin- Milwaukee (top)

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (top)

Westfield State University (top)

  • The 2013 graduating class marks the 30th Anniversary of the Regional Planning program at Westfield State University. Nineteen new graduates join the nearly 400 Alum from our program.
  • This year we welcomed Professor Timothy LeDoux as our new GIS Coordinator. Prof. LeDoux successfully defended his dissertation titled “The Impacts of Retail Supermarket Decentralization in Detroit, Michigan” at Michigan State University in May 2013 and his Masters and Undergraduate Degree are from Clark University.  Besides teaching GIS, his research is in Food Planning.
  • Joining our faculty this fall is Katherine Terzano, Ph.D. who was a lecturer at Arizona State University this past year. Kate’s Ph.D. and M.C.R.P. are from The Ohio State University and her BA is from Ohio University. She will be teaching Introduction to Community Planning and The (Un)Just City and her research interests are in Active/Non-Motorized Transportation.
  • Marijoan Bull, Ph.D., AICP and Carsten Braun, Ph.D. were enthusiastically recommended by the department for tenure and promotion to Associate Professor and the campus committees, Vice President, President and Trustees agree.
  • Presentations and publications in our program include:
    - Braun C. and M. Bezada (2013). The Disappearance of Glaciers in Venezuela. Journal of Latin American Geography, 12(2), 83-121.
    - Bristow, R. (2013). Sustainability and Eco-health tourism. In Sustainability in Tourism. Chapter 4 in Jenkins, I., and Schroder, R., eds. Springer Gabler, Germany, pp. 67-82.
    - Bull, M. (in Press). “Transformative Sustainability Learning: Cultivating a Tree Planting Ethos in Western Kenya,” Journal of Education for Sustainable Development, accepted for publication summer 2013.
    - Conz, B. “Cultural Dimensions of Land Use/Land Cover Change in Highland Guatemala.” Paper presented at the Latin American Studies Association Conference, June 1, 2013, Washington D.C.
    - LeDoux, T. and I. Vojnovic, (2013). Going Outside the Neighborhood: The Shopping Patterns and Adaptations of Disadvantaged Consumers Living in the Lower Eastside Neighborhoods of Detroit, Michigan. Health & Place 19: 1-14.
    - Leiker, K. “Midwest Heat Wave of 1936”, paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Meteorological Society in Austin Texas, January 9, 2013.
  • The senior seminar prepared “Green and Blue: Alternative Futures for the Westfield River Watershed” in partnership with the Westfield River Watershed Association and the neighboring communities.