“You can’t see the forest for the trees!” All of us are familiar with this expression which is often used to describe or understand [Read more…] about Seeing the Forest for the Trees: Planning for Parks and Urban Forests in Los Angeles County
Do you enjoy LEGOs and nature? If yes, then I have the perfect exhibit to recommend to you. Over the weekend, I visited the South Coast Botanic Garden with my family to see the Nature Connects exhibit. [Read more…] about Exhibit Review: Nature Connects at the South Coast Botanic Garden
When I tell people that I work for the Department of Parks and Recreation, many ask whether I watch the TV show Parks and Recreation. While I do enjoy the comedy series, I must say that doing “real life” parks and recreation planning is actually far more interesting and rewarding. Personally, I am motivated by the desire to help improve and expand recreational options for communities in need because I have experienced firsthand the many benefits of parks and recreational facilities. [Read more…] about Park Planning for Underserved Communities in Los Angeles County
Have you ever wondered how people make a living by collecting cans and bottles from trash cans? Do you want to learn more about “canning” and how “canners” survive in New York City? Do you enjoy documentaries? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, I highly recommend that you watch HBO’s Redemption (2012) which was directed and produced by Jon Alpert and Matthew O’Neill. [Read more…] about Documentary Review: Redemption
- Of or relating to the habitat or environment.
- The doctrine, theory, or science of a subject.
- Branch of science concerned with the interrelationships of organisms and their environments, especially as manifested by the natural cycles and rhythms, community development and structure, interaction between different kinds of organisms, geographic distribution, and population alternatives.
- The totality or pattern of relations between organisms and their environments.
~ Webster’s New International Dictionary, 3rd ed., 1976
_____________________________________ [Read more…] about Reyner Banham, Mike Davis, and the Discourse on Los Angeles Ecology
A few weeks ago, I was in Seattle for the American Planning Association (APA)’s National Planning Conference. In addition to learning with and from other planners, I also had the opportunity to present in a session entitled “Collaboration for Healthy Communities in LA County” that focused on the creation and accomplishments of Los Angeles County’s Healthy Design Workgroup (which I shared about previously in Coordination: Can’t Plan Without It). Like the conferences I attended in recent years, this one offered a wide variety of informative and useful sessions and mobile workshops. As a park planner, I naturally gravitated towards those related to parks and recreation. Summarized below are the sessions that I found most interesting and want to highlight in this article: [Read more…] about APA Conference: Lessons from Seattle
Are you concerned about climate change? Do you want visual evidence that it is actually happening? Do you live in a coastal community? Are you passionate about photography? If you answer yes to any (or all) of these questions, I highly recommend that you pay a visit to the Annenberg Space for Photography, one of my favorite places in Los Angeles. [Read more…] about Exhibit Review: Sink or Swim – climate change resilience in photographs at Los Angeles’s Annenberg
Cruising one day along Commonwealth Avenue in Fullerton, CA, I noticed a sequence of fallen birds that were either decayed or decaying on the sidewalk. It seemed to be the result of a complex context; an intersection of natural habitat and built (man-made) artifact (in this case a tunnel with a vehicle underpass and train overpass). So I thought to myself, built environments almost always have to interact with and react to their context. Whether it is regarding the slope of a site, or natural soil conditions, or even existing natural habitats: animals, flora, fauna, etc. [Read more…] about Common Birds of Commonwealth
As a park planner, I am always on the lookout for the latest news about parks and recreation. Recently, I have not had to look very hard. In particular, an article about efforts to increase parkland in Los Angeles was published by the L.A. Times on August 22, 2014 and has since been widely distributed, especially among professionals and associations in my field. [Read more…] about Unincorporated Areas Need More Parks Too
Local and regional parks can be used to mitigate the urban heat island effect and minimize local climate change. Unfortunately, this idea is not often shared, discussed, and/or adequately understood. If you do a search on the web on “climate change and parks,” you will find that most of the results are links to information about how climate change is impacting national parks. Examples include a discussion on the National Park Service (NPS) website, and recent articles published by National Geographic and Scientific America. [Read more…] about Parks and Climate Change: The L.A. County Story