UW Livable City Year reports on sustainability projects with the City of Auburn

Today, the UW’s Livable City Year program published its first reports from a year-long partnership with the City of Auburn. Reports represent a diverse range of applied learning projects students and faculty implemented to address the City of Auburn’s sustainability challenges.

The Livable City Year program (LCY) is a new initiative led by UW faculty directors Branden Born (Urban Design and Planning) and Jennifer Otten (Public Health) in collaboration with UW Sustainability, Urban at UW and the Association of Washington Cities. The program connects local governments with talented students and faculty at University of Washington to work together on critical projects. LCY partners on sustainability and livability goals by engaging students and classes across the university.

The teams working on the projects included students in Public Health, Built Environment, Environmental Studies, Sociology and more. Read the individual project reports which cover cultural city mapping, community place-making, responsible purchasing, homelessness and affordable housing.

Be sure to check out the summary report on Auburn’s Buy Local project, written by Environmental Studies student Sungkun Choi, as part of our program’s Sustainability Studio course. In the course (last quarter’s topic was on socially responsible and equitable purchasing), students developed a website and mobile app to gather information about local businesses and help promote local products and services to a wider consumer base.

The Buy Local project was created in response to a loss of sales tax revenue, and as a way to stimulate the local economy of Auburn.

The first LCY projects were considered a success and forged connections between the UW and City of Auburn communities. Auburn mayor Nancy Backus said the program “helped us make major strides forward in areas that are critical to the health, safety and happiness of our residents.” Read the full announcement.