Nico Larco, School of Architecture & Environment

Picture of Nico Larco with a grey backdrop

Nico Larco

Professor, Architecture
Director, Urbanism Next Center
Co-Founder and Co-Director, Sustainable Cities Initiative
Practice Areas: Sustainability, Urban Design, Architecture, Green Cities, Urban Growth, Walkability, Livability

Faculty bio | Urbanism Next Center | (541) 346-1421 | Twitter

Nico Larco is an academic expert in automated vehicles (AVs), sustainable urban design and suburban development, with a focus on how city design affects transportation choices. His work looks at how to create well-connected and vibrant multifamily housing complexes and strip malls, and at the ability of cities and regions to adapt to changes over time. Nico focuses on the impacts of urban design on sustainability and the potential to transform redevelopment so it moves with sociological shifts. Through the Sustainable City Year Program (SCYP), he directs between 25-35 courses toward a single Oregon city to help solve urban challenges over the course of a year. This model of large-scale engagement has been adopted and adapted by more than 20 programs across the country and internationally. Nico helped found the Educational Partnership for Innovations in Communities Network (EPIC-N), the international organizing network of SCYP programs.  

Recent Media:
University of Oregon guide helps cities manage self-driving cars on their streets (Oregon Public Broadcasting, Jan. 30, 2024)
UO experts help cities navigate the rise of autonomous vehicles (Around the O, Jan. 19, 2024)
"The donut effect" is reshaping America's cities (Axios, Dec. 15, 2023)
No driver? No problem. Robotaxis eye San Francisco expansion (Associated Press, April 5, 2023)
Money approved for states to build car-charging network (Associated Press, Sept. 14, 2022)
Delivery robots aren't quite ready to roll (Axios, Sept. 6, 2022)
Concerns about safe deployment of autonomous vehicles aired at Congressional hearing (Smart Cities Dive, Feb. 4, 2022)
Older Adults, New Mobility, and Automated Vehicles: A Framework for Harnessing Emerging Technology for Individual and Societal Benefit (AARP Public Policy Institute, Feb. 17, 2021)
Contactless delivery robots may soon hit a sidewalk near you (Fast Company, Sept. 22, 2020)
Amazon plans to put 1,000 warehouses in neighborhoods (The Seattle Times, Sept. 16, 2020)
Re-imaging cities (Oregon Public Broadcasting, June 11, 2020)
UO researchers examine how COVID-19 is affecting cities (Around the O, May 27, 2020)
Urbanism Next to address COVID-19 at interactive virtual forum (Around the O, April 21, 2020)
With new mobility, design is even more important (The Dirt, Jan. 27, 2020)
Successful shared mobility in cities and beyond (Smart Cities World, Nov. 8, 2019)
How autonomous vehicles will transform cities and suburbs by ending traffic jams, parking problems and road rage (Newsweek, Dec. 6, 2018)
How AVs could be a boon to transit equity and efficiency (Smart Cities Dive, June 18, 2018)
What role do architects have in a driverless future? (The Architect's Newspaper, April 12, 2018)
We may look back on today’s traffic as “light and dreamy” if we don’t get “Urbanism Next” right (Mobility Lab, March 5, 2018)
Podcast: The effect of driverless cars and Amazon on cities (Engaging Local Government Leaders Podcast, Sept. 15, 2017)
Could autonomous vehicles cause an economic disaster? (Around the O, April 28, 2017)
Cities and self-driving cars (Oregon Public Broadcasting, April 5, 2017)
10-week think tanks (The Chronicle of Higher Education, May 2013)
UO sustainability program partners with Redmond (KTVZ, March 31, 2015)
Why universities need celebrating from the (city) rooftops (Forbes, Dec. 10, 2011)
In Oregon, students seek key to a sustainable city (The New York Times, August 2010)