Paseo Interpretive Totems installed

The final touches on the Elmer Avenue Stormwater infiltration demonstration project are complete! Together with the Council for Watershed Health, this Urban Applications community engagement project led by Jennifer Silbert, developed content that describes discrete components of the Paseo water system and explains a user’s role in stewardship. The resultant "totems" are solar-powered water monitoring devises shrouded in cylindrical graphics that describe water quality, in flow, infiltration rates, plant/soil and water relationships, differences between fertilized and unfertilized beds and the community's role in maintaining a healthy watershed. 


Woodman Ave Shade Structures

New shade structure designs revealed at opening ceremony.

Urban Applications latest project has seen the light of day.  Concept posters were unveiled at a recent ribbon cutting ceremony with local residents, politicians, and community organizations on hand to celebrate the opening of the Woodman Avenue Multi-Beneficial Stormwater Capture and Median Retrofit Project. 

Our four shade structures along Woodman Ave in Panorama City will tell pedestrians the story of the watershed and cultivate a sense of ownership along the walk from Willard St to Saticoy St.  Through mixed media sculpture and text people can learn about pollution, water consumption, local geology, and the history of the watershed. We met with the students of Ranchito Elementary School and San Fernando High School to generate creative ideas with them -- their ideas were fantastic -- and now they will be realized as permanent additions to the street.  Developed in collaboration with the The River Project and the LADWP, the shade structures visualize the importance of the pollution reducing retrofits constructed in the Woodman median, including native plants and a massive underground cistern to clean and recharge our groundwater supplies each time it rains.  

Construction will take place in the coming months. If you want to get involved email

For more info on the ribbon cutting ceremony check out the KCET River Notes article after browsing our gallery below.


Credit: Joshua Link (renders and photographs) & Stephen Linsley (Woodman Median photographs)


UA at the UAM

Urban Applications is at the University Art Museum at Cal State Long Beach as a part of the massive Materials & Applications survey show: Material & Applications: Building Something Beyond Beautiful, projects 2002-2013. The UA portion of the exhibit centers around an interactive map of Long Beach that showcases existing urban acupuncture projects and allows you to pin your sketched or written ideas for future acupuncture projects.  At the close of the exhibition the map will be delivered to our partners - groups in Long Beach engaged in community improvements - who will review all your input with an eye towards their next steps.

The installation also features an expansive look into the origin & mission of Urban Applications as well as an in depth look at some of our projects.



January 25 – April 13, 2014.

1250 N Bellflower Blvd, Long Beach, CA 90840

Monday Closed

Tuesday 12:00 – 5:00 pm

Wednesday 12:00 – 5:00 pm

Thursday 12:00 – 8:00 pm

Friday 12:00 – 5:00 pm

Saturday 12:00 – 5:00 pm

Sunday 12:00 – 5:00 pm

Tickets: Free on Thursday after 5.

Free to UAM members and CSULB students, faculty and staff.

General Public $4.00, non–CSULB students $2 with school ID

Children under twelve free if accompanied by an adult.



Wildflowering L.A.

Wildflowering L.A. w/ Urban Applications & Ecotone Studios

THIS WEDNESDAY, 11/27, from 10-4.

As part of Wildflowering L.A., a native wildflower seed planting initiative conceived of by artist Fritz Haeg, the USPS Eagle Rock Station is one of fifty sites throughout L.A. County that will become home to a diverse, seasonal landscape full of blooms and bugs.

Urban Applications & local landscape architecture firm Ecotone Studios are organizing the planting and we need your help to prepare the 2,000 square foot site! Volunteers are most definitely welcome!

Check flyer for address and more info.

Contact Josh Link if interested:


Paseo: transformation underway 24 - 26, OCT

This week a core team of Urban Applications and the Council for Watershed joined dozens of residents to storm the walls of the Paseo adorning them with colorful silhouettes of native plants & animals and watershed quotes like this one:

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe. - John Muir

 With the first wall complete - all 300 feet of it - students from Sun Valley Middle School will tackle the 2nd one in the upcoming weeks. Progress!

Thanks to everyone who participated in last Saturday's community-engaged transformation of the Paseo - including 6th District Councilwoman Nury Martinez and Field Representative Marcos Sanchez for Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra. Pictures of all this are in the gallery below. 


Paseo Update: Sun Valley Neighborhood Watch

"The Sun Valley Paseo Neighborhood Watch provided feedback on our graphic and interpretive signage proposal in the Paseo. Our partnership with the Council for Watershed Health aims to connect residents with the local ecosystem - highlighting the watershed and native species.  Residents provided us with a list of animal and plant sightings for us to feature in the Otomi-inspired design being developed by our lead graphic designer, Jen Silbert as well as programatic elements that were important to them - seasonally appropriate information on the signs and lighting for the site. The project is on schedule to be installed later in the year with the wall graphics put up via community stenciling sessions.  Get in contact with us if you'd like to be involved. Please email: contact [at] emanate [dot] org"


Voting opens today, April 2nd, for the GOOD LA2050 grant awards! Urban Applications, is seeking a $100k grant for their amazing LA urban blight mapping application START SEEING UGLY. The ultimate goal is to get the app into the hands of the public (that means YOU) to share with everyone the ugliest empty places you pass everyday via an online map where photos you snap will be pinned to a map of LA. 

Finalists are determined by public voting so please head on over to the site and lend your support by voting and leaving a comment!

Thank you so much for your help!

Start Seeing UGLY!!

(so we can Build Something Beautiful

First Project: The Elmer ​Paseo

We are currently underway with our first project, a collaboration with the Council for Watershed Health [CWH] and other community organizations, to create a community-designed and built landmark for the Sun Valley neighborhood.  It's an amazing opportunity  to enhance the social connectedness and safety of the neighborhood as we build on the recent ecological retrofits by the CWH.  The LA Times summary of the first phase of the CWH's efforts  termed the retrofited block  the  "Rolls-Royce of L.A.’s Green Street initiative" [article].

See photos of the CWH's bioswales, permeable pavement and other improvements at the Paseo below.