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The Top Urban Planning Books of 2022

By James Brasuell, Diana Ionescu, Josh Stephens

A large collection of books
Yulia Grigoryeva / Shutterstock

With From the Ground Up: Local Efforts to Create Resilient Cities, Alison Sant shifts the focus to sustainability and resiliency initiatives that acknowledge the crucial role of nature in cities. The book provides examples of community-led programs from around the world that use small-scale interventions to improve urban environments, air quality, public health, equity, and more.

The collection of case studies is grouped in four areas: new visions for public space; efforts to bring green spaces back into cities and protect watersheds; urban forestry initiatives; and resiliency-building projects to guard against the impacts of climate change and prepare communities for a future with more intense storms and other extreme weather events. Each section concludes with an essay tying together the themes that emerge around each topic.

Sant employs informative illustrations, maps, and photos documenting each project, ensuring that the book goes beyond platitudes to show, not just tell, the stories of community members working every day to make their neighborhoods better—from the ground up.

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