Integrating Planning With Nature: Building Climate Resilience Across The Urban-to-Rural Gradient

Integrated planning can bring positive benefits to both the urban and rural areas of Silicon Valley. This demonstration project brought together representatives from three separate disciplines - urban planning, rural planning, and the best available science, to quantify the potential benefits. A series of planning workshops created future scenarios with the input of stakeholders from San José and Coyote Valley. Nature-based solutions were treated as critical infrastructure in helping the region adapt to the climate crisis and build climate resilience. As an example, in the Urban Neighborhood future scenario, greenspace area was tripled while the number of residents and jobs doubled. In the Parks & Protected Areas future scenario, wetlands restoration created wildlife corridors while also serving as regional stormwater infrastructure. Two primary conclusions are: 1) increasing density does not have to occur at the expense of natural capital; and 2) open space and agriculture protection is crucial to ensure the preservation of vital ecosystem services. It was found that larger-scale actions generally decrease risks from floods, heat waves, droughts, and fires to a greater degree than localized actions. Coordination among multiple levels of government and various other stakeholders will be required in order to realize such large-scale actions.

  • Record URL:
  • Corporate Authors:

    San Francisco Estuary Institute



    654 Mission Street
    San Francisco, CA  United States  94105

    Santa Clara Valley Open Space Authority


    Silicon Valley Community Foundation



  • Authors:
    • Bazo, Micaela
    • Benjamin, Matthew
    • Spotswood, Erica
    • Grenier, Letitia
    • Huttenhoff, Michelle
    • Tam, Laura
    • Feinstein, Laura
    • Smith, Jake
    • Landgraf, Marc
    • Freeman, Matt
  • Publication Date: 2020-11


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; Maps; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 129p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01768923
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: SFEI Publication 1013
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jan 12 2021 9:54AM