Full course description
This case focuses on the development of a first-of-its-kind geospatial information systems (GIS) prioritization methodology for conserving and retrofitting parcels as small as .15 acres to improve park access, livability, and climate resilience in urban and suburban areas in Baltimore County, Maryland. Based heavily on the feedback and stated priorities of local residents and stakeholders, the project helps assess the conservation value of a parcel of land based on its potential for improving the social, environmental, and/or economic factors of livability of a nearby community. The case assists urban land conservation organizations, residents and communities, city planners, legislators and regulators, and other interested parties in informing approaches to urban land conservation and park access that improve livability and resilience in cities facing climate change impacts. The development of the project itself, and the multi-sector partnerships required to make the project successful, have taken more than a decade. The project, which has had a positive initial response, may be adapted to or inform land conservation in cities around the globe, from Latin America to Asia.