Sustainable design and planning is a framework for how we plan, build, and live in our built environments in a way that better balances environmental, social, and economic demands. The focus of this course is on developing an understanding of the complex issues associated with sustainability in the built environment and exploring the ways in which sustainable principles and working tools can be applied to address these issues. This course takes an interdisciplinary approach in addressing the various dimensions of sustainability in order to reflect the interests of the citizens, design professionals, and policy makers who are involved in addressing the issues and concerns of our communities. It covers the historical trends of the natural and cultural environment such as eras in climatic variation, industrialization, transportation, energy and water-use, animal and plant adaptation and the role of human intervention in various systems. Students will encounter alternate designed environment future scenarios based on various models of growth and resource-use that promote stewardship and sustainability.
After completing the course requirements, students should be able to:
- Demonstrate an understanding of the environmental, social, and economic complexities of sustainability in built environments;
- Critically analyze the benefits and challenges of incorporating sustainability into design and planning from a variety of perspectives and disciplines;
- Apply the communication skills needed to incorporate sustainable practices into policy and design, including expressing concepts learned through writing, discussions, and presentations.