Books, Reports, Articles & Organizations

CEO's for Cities 
A new organization CEOs for Cities, comprised of big-city mayors, university officials and non-profit leaders, has been formed to advocate for cities on a national level.

US Mayors website information on CEO's in Cities

Alexander, Christopher, The Timeless Way of Building and A Pattern Language (New York: Oxford University Press, 1979). 
These two provocative books have become classics by connecting people's everyday spiritual and aesthetic experiences with the design of architecture, building and planning. The Timeless Way of Building offers a theory about why some buildings are so satisfying; A Pattern Language offers some 250 practical design solutions.

Benfield, Kaid, Raimi, Matthew and Chen, Donald, Once There Were Greenfields; How Urban Sprawl Is Undermining America's Environment, Economy, and Social Fabric (Natural Resources Defense Council, 1999). 
A joint project of the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Surface Transportation Policy Project teh book documents the consequences of sprawling growth patterns and proposes guiding principles for a new kind of "smart" growth.

Blakeley and Snyder, Fortress America: Gated and Walled Communities in the United States (Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution, 1997). 
A sweeping sociological inquiry into the trend of Americans retreating from their communities by locking themselves behind security-controlled barriers and segregating themselves with like-minded neighbors -- chiefly, retirees, the affluent, and the fearful. The barricading of entire communities and the privatizing of governance raises some troubling questions for social and political democracy. 

Downs, Anthony. New Visions for Metropolitan America. (Washington, DC: The Brookings Institution; and Cambridge, MA: The Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, 1994).

Garvin, Alexander, The American City: What Works and What Doesn't (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1995). 
A comprehensive analysis of more than 250 projects and programs in 100 cities, from parks and playgrounds to shopping centers to pedestrian-friendly design. The author has taught a course on American cities at Yale for nearly thirty years, and has served on various urban planning and development commissions in New York City. 

Garvin, Alexander & Gail Berens & Christopher Leinberger, Urban Parks and Open Space (Urban Land Institute:  1997).
Rich with full-color illustrations, this book provides innovative examples of neighborhood, downtown, waterfront, public, and private parks; community gardens; and greenways that you can replicate in your area. You will learn about innovative financing, design, management, and public/private partnerships from others who turned derelict areas into thriving new parks. 

Ewing, Reid. Best Development Practices. Tallahassee, FL: Florida Department of Community Affairs, 1995. 

Girouard, Mark. Cities & People. (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1985).

Gratz, Roberta Brandies & Mintz, Norman, Cities Back from the Edge-New Life for Downtown (New York:  Preservation Press, Wiles and Sons, 1998).
Cities is an unapologetically positive book about what is great about urban living, and a warning against what the "project planners" have done to cities (stadiums, highways, superstores, etc.), and what they continue to do.  The book though concentrates on the activists around the country who have slowly been paving the way towards a revitalization of American cities without massive public infrastructure investments. 

Hylton, Thomas, Save our Lands, Save our Towns (Preservation Pennsylvania).
A beautifully photographed, superbly written book about what we can do to preserve and nurture our communities.  Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Thomas Hylton looks at 10 states that have used comprehensive state plans to preserve farmland, revive urban areas, protect the environment, and reclaim a sense of community.  He offers valuable advice for any state or community looking to combat the effects of suburban sprawl.

Jacobs, Jane. The Death and Life of Great American Cities.  New York: Vintage Books, 1961.

National Trust for Historic Preservation, Revitalizing Downtown (National Trust for Historic Preservation).
Downtowns have suffered as jobs and retail continue to relocate to malls and business parks -- businesses have closed, property values and sales tax revenues have dropped, and neglected buildings have remained.  But this book argues that Main Street can make a comeback in small- and mid-sized towns.  It offers a comprehensive approach to revitalizing downtowns, with strategies for developing a working plan, improving storefront design, and creating adequate parking.  Includes a section on marketing techniques.

Nelessen, Anton, Visions for a New American Dream (APA Planners Press).
Citizens are clamoring for neighborhoods that recapture the sense of community that defined the American dream.  This book shows you how to combine the best design principles of the past with the technological advances of the present to achieve a more satisfying environment.  Nelessen outlines a seven-step planning and design process for creating hamlets, villages, and neighborhoods.

Norquist, John O., The Wealth of Cities-Revitalizing the Centers of American Life (Perseus Books: 2000).
John Norquist, Mayor of Milwaukee and New Urbanist, reviews his experience with revitalizing downtown Milwaukee.  Although he references Milwaukee much during the book, it is meant as critique of the many federal and state subsidies which fuel sprawl.  Meant as a practical guide to downtown revitalizaiton.

Simons, Robert, Turning Brownfields into Greenbacks (Urban Land Institute:  1998).
A pragmatic guide to redeveloping brownfields, this book offers realistic methods and techniques you can use to turn contaminated land into a profit opportunity. Both developers and public officials will learn which brownfields are good candidates for redevelopment, and what subsidies and other inducements are needed to encourage it.

Stegman, Michael & Diane R. Suchman, State and Local Affordable Housing Programs: A Rich Tapestry (Urban Land Institute:  1999).
This update is a major revision to the 1987 ULI publication entitled Nonfederal Housing Programs. Learn what the best state and local
affordable housing programs have to offer in your area and nationwide. The book profiles over 100 state and local affordable housing programs that increased home ownership, used tax credits and housing trust funds, developed innovative rental or secondary market initiatives in community development finance, preserved affordable housing, and dealt with welfare and public housing reform.

Suarez, Ray, The Old Neighborhood--What We Lost in the Great Suburban Migration:  1966-1999 (Free Press:  1999)
Ray Suarez, formerly host of NPR's Talk of the Nation and now correspondent with The Newshour with Jim Lehrer, has written a highly personal, though well researched story that covers the story behind the suburbanization of American.  Though he spends some time speaking with the people in the new suburban communities, he spend the majority with the true heroes who have never left over the past generation. 

Sutro, Suzanne, Reinventing the Village (APA Planners Press). 
While the village form is back in vogue as the "neotraditional town," countless historic villages are threatened by unsympathetic suburban development.  This report shows how to protect and even expand existing village centers and sensitively adapt the design strategies of the neotraditional town planning movement. It examines village center zoning districts, architectural and design guidelines, historic districts, traffic management plans, and comprehensive planning efforts.

Urban Land Institute, New Uses for Obsolete Buildings (Urban Land Institute:  1996).
A pragmatic guide to redeveloping brownfields, this book offers realistic methods and techniques you can use to turn contaminated land into a profit opportunity. Both developers and public officials will learn which brownfields are good candidates for redevelopment, and what subsidies and other inducements are needed to encourage it.

Downtown Revitalization in Urban Neighborhoods and Small Cities. Northeast-Midwest Coalition. (Washington DC, 2001).

Explaining Urban Density and Transit to Decrease Auto Dependence and Costs. Holtzclaw, John. San Francisco, CA: Natural Resources Defense Council; and Costa Mesa, CA: California Home Energy Efficiency Rating Systems, 1994.

Greetings from Smart Growth America. Smart Growth America.
Washington, DC. 2000.

High Tech Specialization:  A Comparison of High Technology Centers. Brookings Institution, Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy, Washington, DC:  January 2001.

How To Turn a Place Around: A Handbook for Creating Successful Public Spaces.Project for Public Places, New York City, NY:  March 2001.

How Transportation and Community Partnerships are Shaping America. Project for Public Places.(American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, 2000)

The Implications of Changing U.S. Demographics for Housing Choice and Location in U.S. Cities. Brookings Institution Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy, (March 2001.)

Incentive Zoning: Meeting Urban Design and Affordable Housing Objectives, (PAS Report 494 September 2000 by Marya Morris, AICP)

Laws of the Landscape: How Policies Shape Cities in Europe and America. Nivola, Pietro S.(Brookings Institution, Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy, Washington, DC: February 1999).

Lost in the Balance:  How State Policies Affect the Fiscal Health of Cities. Brookings Institution, Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy, (Washington DC: March 2001.)

A New Era in Urban Education? Ravitch, Diane. (Washington, DC: The Brookings Institution, Policy Brief #35, August 1998).

The New Metropolitan Reality: Where the Rubber Meets the Road in Antipoverty Policy. Hughes, Mark Alan and Julie E. Sternberg.Washington, DC: The Urban Institute, 1992.

New Mission for Brownfields:  Attacking Sprawl by Revitalizing Older Communities. National Governors Association. Washington, DC. October 2000.

Office Sprawl:  The Evolving Geography of Business.  Robert E. Lang. Brookings Institution, Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy, Washington, DC:  November 2000.

Real Towns:  Making your Neighborhood Work. Center for Livable Communities at the Local Government Commission. Sacramento, CA January 2001.

A Report on the Changing Realities of Cities.  The Council for Invesment in the New American City--a partership between the U.S. Council of Mayors and the Mortgage Bankers Association of America-- (October, 2000). 

Smart Growth, Better Neighborhoods:  Communities Leading the Way.National Neighborhood Coalition.  Washington, DC.  2000.

"The State of Low Income Housing." Journal of Housing and Community Development (National Association of Housing and Community Redevelopment Officials. Nov./Dec. 2000).

Strategies for Successful Infill Development.  Northeast-Midwest Coalition.  Washingon, DC. (March 2001)

Ten Steps to a Living Downtown.  Moulton, Jennifer.  (Brookings Institution, Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy, Vol. 1, Number 10 Oct. 1999). 

The Twentieth-Century American City: Problem, Promise, and Reality. Teaford, Jon C. (Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1986).

Urban Fiscal Problems: Coordinating Actions Among Governments, Howard, Chernick and Andrew Reschovsky. prepared for the "Metropolitan Assembly on Urban Problems: Linking Research to Action" conference. Chicago, IL: Center for Urban Affairs and Policy Research, Northwestern University, September 30-October 2, 1994.

Vacant Land in Cities:  An Urban Resource. Brookings Institution, Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy, Washington, DC:  December 2000

Who Should Run the Housing Voucher Program? A Reform Proposal. (Brookings Institution, Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy, Washington, DC:  November 2000)

Why Johnny Can't Walk to School.  (National Trust for Historic Preservation, Washington, DC:  November 2000)


"The Downtowns of the Future: Venues for Creativity and Interaction in the New Economy."  Alliance for Regional Stewardship. May 2001.

"Best Places to Live 2000".  Money Magazine.  November 2000.

"Rising Like a Phoenix." Conservation Matters.  Conservation Law Foundation. Fall 2000 Newsletter.

"Flashy Downtown Revival Rests on Neighborhoods."  November 27, 2000. 

"Back to the Future of 'New Urban' Homes." The Columbus Dispatch.  December 11, 2000.

"Raising the roof; Ann Arbor is encouraging midrise buildings to increase traffic and density in its downtown."  Crain's Detroit Business.  December 11, 2000. 

"Neglected West Oakland Poised for Revival--Before Freeways It was a Swinging 'Hood."  San Francisco Chronicle.  January 2, 2001.

"Pennsylvania College Redefines ‘Brownfields Reclamation," March 2, 2001.

"Group Urges More Rental Housing," Washington Post. March 13, 2001.

"Grass Roots Business: Downtown Revival Comes to the South," New York Times. March 18, 2001. 

"State Brownfields Programs Take National Stage," March 19, 2001.

"Bush Administration Raises Loan Limits on FHA-Insured Multi-Family Construction," HUD News Release. March 20, 2001.

"Back from the Brink," available from the American Architectural Foundation, 202/626-7514.  Focuses on community revitalization in three communities: Chattanooga, Portland, and Suisun City, CA. 

"A Pattern for Living," available from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, 410-268-8832 (or 1-800-628-3379). 

"A Tale of Three Cities," available through 1000 Friends of Oregon, 503-497-1000. 

The Brookings Institution Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy
The Brookings Institution Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy seeks to shape a new generation of urban policies that will help build strong neighborhoods, cities, and metropolitan regions. In partnership with academics, private and public sector leaders, and locally-elected officials, the Center will inform the national debate on the impact of government policies, private sector actions, and national trends on cities and their metropolitan areas.

Center for Neighborhood Technology
Scott Perkins 
2125 W. North Avenue 
Chicago, IL 60647 
The Neighborhood Works, 6 issues/year 

Congress for a New Urbanism 
The Hearst Building 
5 Third Street, Suite 500A 
San Francisco, CA 94103 

Design Center for American Urban Landscapes
College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture 
University of Minnesota 
1313 Fifth Street, SE Suite 222 
Minneapolis, MN 55414-1546 

The Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs at Cleveland State University
1737 Euclid Avenue; 
Cleveland, Ohio 44115 
Devoted to studying land use, urban development and planning. Has in-depth reports relating to growth in Ohio. See Public Policy and "Rural Sprawl: Lessons from Northeast Ohio. 

National Neighborhood Coalition
The NNC is an umbrella organization of national nonprofits, networks of community, neighborhood and faith-based organizations and other
advocates who are committed to promoting socially and economically
healthy, vibrant neighborhoods. 

New Urban News
Box 6515 
Ithaca, NY 14851 

On the Ground: The Multimedia Journal on Community
Design and the Environment 
Publisher: Thousand Words 
PO Box 95452 
Seattle, WA 98145-2452 

Box 1897 
Lawrence, KS 66044-8897 

Project for Public Places
PPS is a non-profit organization that for 25 years has successfully carried out its mission statement to build communities by creating the special places that build community life. PPS has brought its technical assistance, research and educational efforts to over 1000 communities, throughout the United States as well as abroad, to improve the comfort, attractiveness, social and economic use and vitality of their public spaces.

Scenic America
America's Smart Growth/Scenic Stewardship initiative helps state and local activists protect the natural beauty and distinctive character of their communities with technical assistance on billboard and on-premise sign control; place-sensitive highway design; design review; scenic byways programs; and cellular tower siting, tree preservation ordinances; scenic resource identification, including using GIS mapping; and ridgeline protection.

The Sonoran Institute: Community Stewardship Exchange
The Community Stewardship Exchange includes information, contacts and examples to promote community-based strategies that preserve and protect the ecological integrity of protected lands and at the same time meet the economic aspirations of adjoining landowners and communities. A terrific website devoted to community sustainability, especially those challenged by a changing economic base. 

Urban Ecology
Urban Ecology works to build cities that are ecologically thriving and socially just. Founded in 1975, we envision, design, and plan cities to support a healthy natural environment, a multicultural and thriving community, and an innovative and vigorous local economy. Through educational programs, tools for community planning, and advocacy, Urban Ecology assists diverse constituencies engaged in changing their land use and building patterns. We connect individuals to their neighborhoods, neighborhoods to cities, and cities to the entire Bay Area region. These connections are essential to planning and building more livable Bay Area-one in which each of our hundred cities expresses its own identity, and yet all are linked together by a common understanding of our shared destiny.
The Urban Ecologist
Publisher: Urban Ecology 
405 14th Street Suite 900 
Oakland, CA 94612