Land Use & Development

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Evanston has a vibrant downtown, rich architectural history, tree lined streets and over 70 public parks. It has taken careful planning to achieve this balance between the urban and natural environments and Evanston plans to continue this practice moving forward.

Green Development

Further development of buildings and land is an inevitable part of Evanston’s future, but this doesn’t mean that Evanston has to choose between development and nature. Instead, Evanston plans to implement as much responsible development as it can so that both the environment and developed areas can exist in harmony.

In 2009, Evanston adopted a Green Building Ordinance that requires US Green Building Council (USGBC) LEED Silver certification for all new commercial and municipal construction over 20,000 square feet. Commercial and municipal renovations have a list of mandatory green features to select from.

Green building is an important topic for the City of Evanston and additional details on green building in Evanston can be found on the city's Green Building page.

Sustainable Pest Control and Pesticide Reduction Policy

The City of Evanston seeks to serve as a model to the public for the use of sustainable pest control practices, including natural lawn care and integrated pest management, as well as increase awareness about such practices.  In 2010, the City of Evanston created the Sustainable Pest Control and Pesticide Reduction Policy. The purpose of this Policy is to reduce the use of pesticides in the City of Evanston through the implementation of sustainable pest  control practices on City-owned or -leased property, and to educate the general public as well as the private sector about these practices. Click here to read the full policy. 

Lawn and Yard Care for Home and Property Owners

Lawn care is a cornerstone of owning a home or property. Because of this, it is important that residents and land owners are familiar with sustainable lawn care practices in order to do our part to make Evanston a greener area to live. Click here for more information!

One of the best ways to conserve native wildlife in your yard is to create and protect habitat that supports migratory and nesting bird. In partnership with Citizens' Greener Evanston, a new guide has been created to help homeowners enhance their outdoor space for birds. Download the guide Enhancing Your Garden for Birds


The Evanston Ecology Center  was built in 1974 and has been a focal point of environmental awareness ever since. The Center offers classes, summer camps, and other environmentally focused programs in an effort to promote environmental awareness among Evanston’s citizens.


Evanston has over 70 different parks that enable both residents and visitors to enjoy the natural beauty that Evanston has to offer. For a complete listing of parks in Evanston, visit the Parks & Recreation page.