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Nathan Wojcik is earning a Master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning at the State University of New York at Albany (UAlbany). He is enrolled in Planning History, Comprehensive Planning, and Bicycle and Pedestrian Transportation courses and focus his studies on alternative transportation and sustainable design and implementation. He has also started an internship with the Institute for Infrastructure and Asset Management located in Colonie, NY. The following describes his reasoning for his research focus.

Sustainability is based on the principle that everything humans need for survival and well-being depends, either directly or indirectly, on the natural environment. Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in harmony. Sustainability is important because it ensures that we have and will continue to have the water, materials, and resources to protect human health and the environment. Currently, humans are not sustaining a balance between us and nature. We are procreating at an exponential rate and consuming resources much faster than the earth can renew them. There are numerous alternatives available when it comes to using LID techniques to increase the sustainable balance between human development and nature. LID techniques are used more during new construction applications because it is easier to design new buildings and subdivisions with LID techniques in comparison to retrofits and greening old urban corridors. Transportation planning incorporates not only the movement of people but the design of transportation projects affect the urban neighborhoods and land use applications as well.

His research work include; how existing cities incorporate LID/green infrastructure designs into the existing urban landscape. Old cities have the added challenge of existing infrastructure, traffic routes to suburbs, and diverse neighborhoods with an automobile dependency. There are a few well developed cities that have integrated LID and green infrastructure into the urban areas successfully and changed the culture of the residents.

Academic Advisor, Dr. Catherine Lawson, University at Albany/SUNY