PLG 408/508 Planning for Urban Resilience

This course will feature explore urban resilience across the world, with a focus on cities in arid environments, such as the binational El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juárez, Chihuaha metropolitan region pictured above.

Cities are on the frontlines of climate change as the built environment is impacted by increasing sea level rise, floods, drought, wildfires and urban heat. This course explores the challenges and opportunities of planning and designing the built environment for climate adaptation and resilience. Urban resilience is the capacity of cities and their interconnected systems to survive, adapt, and thrive no matter what chronic stresses and acute shocks they experience. Students will learn a range of climate impacts on the built environment, examine different planning and design strategies to increase urban resilience, and explore real world case studies of cities planning for urban resilience. Urban resilience will be considered through a variety of planning and design scales – buildings, landscapes, neighborhoods, cities, and regions. This course emphasizes inclusive planning processes that engage the most vulnerable populations to climate impacts. Guest lectures from researchers and practitioners will also be featured to share their professional experiences in connecting climate science to planning and design efforts.

Course Objectives
After completing the course requirements, students should be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the range of climate impacts on the built environment.
  • Critically analyze planning and design strategies to increase resilience based on current and projected climate risks.
  • Develop an inclusive urban resilience planning process.

In addition to the above learning outcomes, graduate students should be able to:

  • Develop research skills by writing an original research proposal, conducting a literature review, finding and analyzing the appropriate data, and summarizing results with recommendations.
  • Demonstrate professional presentation skills with a focus on both verbal and visual presentation techniques.