1st Edition

The Sustainable Urban Design Handbook

By Nico Larco, Kaarin Knudson Copyright 2024
    464 Pages 456 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    464 Pages 456 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    The Sustainable Urban Design Handbook gathers the best sustainability practices and latest research from the fields of architecture, landscape architecture, planning, development, ecology, and environmental engineering and presents them in a graphically rich and accessible format that can help guide urban design decisions in cities of all sizes.

    The book presents a comprehensive framework that organizes more than 50 elements of sustainable urban design under five main topics–Energy Use & Greenhouse Gas, Water, Ecology & Habitat, Energy Use & Production, and Equity & Health–and relative to four project scales: Region & City, District & Neighborhood, Block & Street, and Project & Parcel. Each element chapter includes a summary of importance and background, compares typical practices and recommended approaches, explains connections to other elements, and concludes with urban design guidelines that can be used to directly inform projects and decisions.

    Easy to use and reference, The Sustainable Urban Design Handbook provides both an in-depth introduction to topics across sustainable urban design and serves as an on-going reference for anyone involved in the creation of sustainable urban environments. This resource will be useful to design and planning professionals, community members, students, and elected officials in guiding decisions about our sustainable future.

    1. Energy Use and Greenhouse Gas  2. Water  3. Ecology and Habitat  4. Energy Use and Production  5. Equity and Health


    Nico Larco, AIA, is an urban designer, architect, and Professor of Architecture and Urban Design at the University of Oregon where he is the Director of the Urbanism Next Center and Co-Director of the Sustainable Cities Institute. He leads ELEMENT/Urban Design, a design and consulting firm.

    Kaarin Knudson, AIA, is a civic leader, architect, and educator with more than 20 years’ experience working to advance sustainable urban design and community-led solutions. She is principal of BETTER PRACTICE, and teaches the graduate workshop in urban design at the University of Oregon.

    "For the past twenty years, we have seen how sustainable design can be addressed through nature-based systems and solutions. With climate change and resilience as critical concerns, we need to push these boundaries with our design interventions. Resources like The Sustainable Urban Design Handbook can help all disciplines to do that."
    Margot Long, BCSLA FCSLA ASLA, Principal, PWL Partnership Landscape Architects Inc., Canada

    Making great urban places combines ecology, design, and the social sciences at many scales. The Sustainable Urban Design Handbook is comprehensive road map for doing this holistically, with detail for practitioners and accessible writing for community members alike.
    Blaine Merker, Gehl, Director and Head of Climate Action, USA

    "This well-researched and comprehensive book makes sense of the often confusing and counteracting, multiple threads that must work together to produce sustainable urban design. It will be very useful to professionals, community stakeholders, elected officials, and students."
    Ellen Dunham-Jones, Professor and Director of the Urban Design Program at the Georgia Institute
    of Technology, Author of Retrofitting Suburbia: Urban Design Solutions for Redesigning Suburbs