Urban Planning for an Uncertain Future

How cities address inequality in their planning efforts varies widely, raising concerns that adaptation interventions may continue patterns of disparate risk for low-income communities of color. This project examined how the cities of Houston and San Antonio are preparing for climate change and addressing existing environmental justice issues. By looking at their planning documents, interviewing city planners and community organizers, and using spatial statistics, the team found that both cities are centering racial equity in their plans. However, community organizers often experienced a disconnect between rhetoric and their ability to drive the process, which raised concerns about continued climate injustices. Additionally, using spatial statistics, they found unequal climate risks for Black and Latinx residents and unequal proximity to early infrastructure projects for Black residents in both cities. 

Team Members

Deidre Zoll
Integrated Biology
Robert Paterson
Community and Regional Planning
Pavithra Vasudevan
African and African Diaspora Studies