Designing to withstand the unpredictable.

We help communities prepare for—and protect themselves from—natural and man-made shocks like hurricanes, super storms, droughts, sea-level rise, heat waves, wildfires, and earthquakes. Even social volatility and economic stress.

Places that are designed, planned, and organized for resilience have a significantly greater chance of weathering physical trauma and social provocations. They’re also much more likely to regenerate and prosper afterward.

Urban Resilience in the Age of COVID-19

How can cities implement a reflective (versus reactive) approach to the COVID-19 crisis? Jessica Florez, Senior Urban Designer and Co-Director of our Resilience Lab, explores both the city’s role in our current moment as well as potential strategies that may mitigate future pandemics’ impact on the built environment.

Read more. 

S-E-E: Social, Economic, and Environmental Resilience

Climate change is a critical part of resilience. But it’s really only one-third of the bigger picture. True resilience takes into account social and economic concerns, too. Our S-E-E approach to resilience provides more holistic protection to our clients and communities.

Exterior of Spaulding Rehabiliation Hospital
Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital was the first building on the Boston waterfront to voluntarily raise the elevation of its ground floor in response to sea level rise and future storm surge predictions.
The coastline in Puerto Rico is being eroded at a rate of up to 3.3 feet per year. We're designing landscapes that provide flood protection and ecological benefits.
Designing a More Resilient Puerto Rico

We established a global alliance dedicated to creating opportunities for Puerto Rico to recover from and thrive after Hurricane Maria. We’re now developing pilot programs aimed at protecting the island from future extreme weather events.

Setting the Resilience Standard

In 2012, we helped develop one of the world’s most comprehensive resilience consensus standards. Today, RELi has been formally adopted by the U.S. Green Building Council, and is poised to become a global rating system similar to LEED.

The Bell Museum in St. Paul, Minnesota—which incorporates RELi design principles—protects and nurtures biodiversity through features like a frog pond, a bee pollinator garden, and a native wildlife habitat.
Brandon Avenue
The award-winning master plan for Brandon Avenue on the campus of the University of Virginia creates a resilient mixed-use district with a landscaped bioretention area, gathering spaces, pedestrian paths, and direct access to the student health and wellness center.
Health Districts for Community Resilience

Resilience starts with people. The healthier we are, the more resilient we are. We’re helping institutions partner with their communities to plan resilient health districts that feature green infrastructure, sustainable buildings, and health-supporting amenities—all within reach.