Resilient City Systems: Rethinking Parks and Trails

APA Texas Chapter


Friday, October 19, 2018
3:45 p.m. - 5:15 p.m. CDT

CM | 1.50

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Parks and trails planning is rapidly evolving into an interdisciplinary practice that considers many different community benefits beyond what has historically been expected. This is especially prudent in areas most vulnerable to climate, community, and economic change. As a result, a number of planning and design projects in the central Texas and Houston regions convey a new type of thinking about the role parks and trails play in our cities. The Healthy Parks Plan for Travis, Bastrop, and Caldwell Counties focuses on how parks can be better leveraged to impact community health in the communities where it is needed most. Work on the iconic trail around Lady Bird Lake in Austin led by the Trail Foundation has evolved to explicitly incorporate urban ecology and restoration into each project. The vision encapsulated in the Bayou Greenways 2020 Plan for Houston’s Bayou trails and the projects the Houston Parks Board is pushing forward throughout the region take into account both Houston’s flood issues and the task of providing a world class amenity for the fourth largest city in the country. And, the Park Smart Precinct One project in Harris County focuses on how parks can promote both community and ecological resilience in post-Harvey Houston. Each project demonstrates how parks and trails planning can better integrate both community and ecological resilience into the planning process and how these integral parts of the city fabric can contribute to our larger city resilience goals.

Session Objectives:
1. To expand what attendees think of as parks and trails planning practice.
2. To encourage attendees to incorporate systems thinking/multi-disciplinarity into their work.
3. To provide key examples from leaders in the region on how multi-disciplinary practice/thinking is applied to specific parks and trails projects.


Katie Coyne

Katie is a Senior Planner and Co-lead of the Urban Ecology Studio at Asakura Robinson, an integrated landscape architecture, planning, and urban design firm. She works on planning and design projects specifically targeting increased resiliency from urban to rural areas, restoring ecosystem function on small-sites and across regions, conserving open ... Read More

Amy Morris

Amy Morris is Associate Director of Planning at The Trust for Public Land. She manages complex community-based planning projects including regional conservation, trail, and park plans. She specializes in working with diverse partners to build community consensus and in facilitating and analyzing a wide range of community input from small ... Read More

Charles Place

For the last three years, Chip has served as the Managing Director of Capital Programs for the Houston Parks Board where he is responsible for land acquisition, design and construction of Bayou Greenways 2020, which will create a 150-mile network of linear parks along Houston’s major waterways. Chip has ... Read More

Beth Carroll

Beth Carroll is the Project and Creative Director for The Trail Foundation, an Austin nonprofit focused on protecting and enhancing the Trail at Lady Bird Lake. She graduated Manga Cum Laude from Texas A&M University with a BLA in Landscape Architecture in 2006. She has worked in a wide ... Read More

Contact Info

Barbara Holly,