Green Communities Research Center
The Green Communities Research Center conducts research on best practices in planning for green communities.
APA and its several partners will provide outreach, training, and technical assistance to local and regional governments to help them implement solar energy in their communities.
Recently Completed Projects
APA partnered with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Clarion Associates, and the American Wind Energy Association to produce a guidebook, Planning for Wind Energy, with funding from the Department of Energy.
APA partnered with the Environmental and Energy Study Institute for this three-year project on the integration of climate change and energy issues into planning practice. The project aimed to help communities reduce greenhouse gas emissions, adapt to a changing climate, and transition to renewable energy resources. The project resulted in an online, searchable database of case studies and resources; a climate change reader; and a PAS Report, which was also developed in collaboration with the University of North Carolina Asheville and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Funding for the project was provided by the Surdna and George Gund Foundations and APA's Environment, Natural Resources, and Energy Division.
APA partnered with the National Complete Streets Coalition to prepare a PAS Report on best policy and implementation practices to create complete streets. The National Policy and Legal Analysis Network to Prevent Childhood Obesity (NPLAN), another project partner, developed model policies that are included in the report. Funding for the project was provided by the Federal Highway Administration, the National Association of Realtors, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota, the Ruth Mott Foundation, and NPLAN.
With a grant from the Duke Foundation, APA conducted a census of local planning activity in jurisdictions that contain priority conservation areas to protect critical wildlife habitats.
APA worked with Bethel New Life and the Center for Public Environmental Oversight, with funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, on a training program and workbook that aims to help communities see brownfields sites as opportunities for redevelopment.
With support from the USDA Forest Service, APA collaborated with the International Society of Arboriculture and American Forests to produce Planning the Urban Forest, a best practices manual about integrating urban forestry into municipal planning activities.
A series of briefing papers, case studies, and technical reports were developed through the City Parks Forum, a program supported by a grant from the Wallace Foundation and the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.
The Growing Smart Legislative Guidebook was the culmination of a seven-year research project. It contains model planning and zoning enabling legislation, developed under guidance of the Growing Smart Directorate, and with funding support from several federal agencies and foundations.
The Green Communities Research Center regularly works with partner organizations on research projects and programs. Organizations we are currently working with or recently worked with on research projects are listed here.
Environmental and Energy Study Institute
National Complete Streets Coalition
Public Health Law and Policy
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
American Wind Energy Association
Bethel New Life, Inc.
Center for Public Environmental Oversight
International Society of Arboriculture