On March 28th, the Kansas Chapter of the American Planning Association in conjunction with the University of Kansas sponsored the symposium, “Sustainability: Doing it the Kansas Way.” Forty-five planners and planning students from across the state came to Lawrence to hear how to create sustainable communities that are more equitable, economically viable, and environmentally sound.
As the Professional Development Officer for the Kansas Chapter, Associate Professor Bonnie Johnson helped plan and recruit fellow KU colleagues and practitioners in Lawrence to fill out the program. Christina Holt, Associate Director of Community Tool Box Services here at KU presented how anyone can use the online Community Tool Box to promote community engagement. Kirk McClure, Professor of Urban Planning talked about “The Sustainability of Housing Markets in Kansas”. Ruth Ann Atchley, Chair and Associate Professor of Psychology explained how nature can help us recharge from the stresses created when technology and us are always “on”. Steve Vukelich, Senior Associate with Gould Evans gave us a walking tour of the Lawrence Public Library as it is expanded and becomes LEED certified. Eileen Horn, Sustainability Coordinator for Douglas County and Lawrence showed as urban gardens for residents and for farm entrepreneurs as part of the Common Ground program. Lastly, Jim Modig, University Architect/Director of KU Design & Construction Management showed us the bio-swale on West Campus and the new pervious surface parking lot on campus.