Sustainability leader tapped to create aggressive, long-term action plan to reduce emissions and mitigate effects of climate change on city’s most vulnerable communities

WEST HOLLYWOOD– As climate hazards increase and impact urban centers across the country, BuroHappold has been selected to design and implement a comprehensive Climate Action and Adaptation Plan (CAAP) for the City of West Hollywood, Calif. The new climate plan, expected for completion in the summer of 2021, will define a new set of emissions goals and guidelines for the growing city and lay out an approach to overcoming climate change-related obstacles through the middle of the century.

BuroHappold will work closely with West Hollywood’s leadership and senior sustainability planner Robyn L Eason along with various city departments and stakeholders to craft an inclusive plan that responds to West Hollywood’s unique social, political and environmental contexts. The plan’s aim is to aggressively reduce carbon dioxide emissions and improve the city’s resiliency across mobility, housing, industrial and civic sectors. Existing city codes, policies and programs that currently facilitate climate change action will serve as a baseline for the new evidence-based, ultra-green guidelines and implementation strategy.

BuroHappold is a leader in climate action and resilience plans for municipalities and other organizations, and recently unveiled a comprehensive sustainability plan for Los Angeles County. In 2017, the firm worked with New York City and C40 Cities to create the first climate action plan in the world to comply with the Paris Climate Agreement. BuroHappold also completed a multiyear effort on climate action and resilience for the City of Cambridge, Mass., and it is currently working with the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy to develop regional climate actions in for Chicago, Denver, Kansas City, and Washington, D.C.

Led by Christopher Rhie, an urban planner and sustainability strategist at BuroHappold in Los Angeles, the West Hollywood Climate Action and Adaptation Plan follows on the city’s efforts to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions including its Green Building Program, Go Solar West Hollywood Program, membership in the Clean Power Alliance, municipal retrofit projects, community outreach, and municipal facility benchmarking and reporting.

Sabrina Bornstein, head of climate resilience at BuroHappold in Los Angeles, will lead the process of developing a climate vulnerability assessment to bring awareness to the largest hurdles facing West Hollywood as climate hazards strengthen and transform. West Hollywood’s prioritization of equity in the Climate Action and Adaptation Plan will be particularly clear in the development of adaptation measures focusing resources on the most vulnerable groups facing climate impacts — often, climate change disproportionately impacts those without the resources to prepare and overcome them.

To elevate social justice and ensure that community voices are heard in the CAAP planning process, BuroHappold is partnering with Pueblo Planning, the 2019 recipient of the American Planning Association (APA) Los Angeles Emerging Planning and Design Firm Award. City of West Hollywood officials cited that the selection of BuroHappold’s team was influenced by its approach centered on authentic, meaningful, and innovative outreach and engagement.

Using data gathered from West Hollywood’s prior sustainability planning efforts, BuroHappold’s team will develop climate mitigation actions that build upon the City’s guiding principles. The resulting actions will not only reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but they will also accelerate the achievement of broader planning goals including equitable outcomes for West Hollywood’s most vulnerable communities.