Bay Area

By Design

Climate change, sea-level rise, and earthquake vulnerability means that businesses, homes, and public infrastructure are at significant risk.

The Bay Area needs a new paradigm shift based on a collaborative and solutions-oriented framework for resiliency planning.

Resiliency by Design presents a unique opportunity to develop a unified vision for a resilient future along our waterfront.

This map displays social vulnerability in areas below the water level. Click on the dial on the left-hand side of the map to change the water level.


Key Regional Challenges

Natural Hazards

The Bay Area is at significant risk due to earthquakes, sea level rise, and extreme storm events resulting from climate change.

Vulnerable Public Assets

The region's water, power and transportation infrastructure were not designed with climate change in mind. Similarly, valuable natural assets that protect our shoreline, such as wetlands, are being threatened by inundation and development.

At-Risk Communities & Businesses

Existing and planned growth along the Bay shoreline on fill are subject to sea level rise and flooding. Many of these waterfront communities are also under socioeconomic stress.


Are the sea level rise numbers accurate? Can the region's natural assets be maintained or even enhanced? How do we protect our communities? How do we pay for the solutions? Are we looking at the problem in the right way?

How can we bring the best minds together to work towards a more resilient and sustainable future?

Bay Area
Resiliency by Design

Captures the imagination and commitment of the public, working alongside communities to create new ideas.

Creates opportunities for collaboration, recognizing existing efforts and jurisdictional mandates.

Taps into the innovative and creative spirit that defines the Bay Area.

Presents tangible and implementable solutions to complex issues.


Join Us!

Together, as planners, architects, designers, engineers, ecologists, and community leaders, we will create a unique, exciting and innovative process that engages diverse groups and people in the design experience to create a waterfront that responds to climate change and enhances our quality of life.

Collaborators To Date


City and County of San Francisco
City of Oakland
City of Berkeley
County of San Mateo

Regional / State / Federal Government

Bay Conservation and Development Commission
State Office of Planning and Research
Strategic Growth Council
Bay Area Regional Collaborative -- BCDC, MTC, ABAG, BAAQMD
Coastal Conservancy
Coastal Hazards Adaptation Resiliency Group

Organizations & Institutions

Bay Institutue / Bay.org
Climate Readiness Institute
San Francisco Estuary Institute
100 Resilient Cities

Key aspects of the Design Challenge

COLLABORATIVE design process where community needs are integral to the process.

INTERDISCIPLINARY partnerships to identify opportunities for innovation.

LEVERAGE existing efforts and financial resources.

IMPLEMENTABLE, innovative, design-driven solutions to the region's changing needs.

ELEVATE the public dialogue on sea level rise, waterfront planning, and their interconnectedness.

Multi-Stage Process

Process Timeline

Get involved!

Ready for the challenge? Please let us know what you think and how you would like to participate.

Contact Us