We believe education empowers people to take an active role in creating a more equitable, sustainable and prosperous region. That's why the majority of our programming is now free to the public.

Upcoming Events

February 2023

san francisco skyline from dolores
Feb
1
Wed
San Francisco + San José + Oakland

The Future of Urbanism: The Shared Prosperity Partnership

Digital Discourse to
The strength of American cities – and the nation as a whole – depends on generating inclusive growth for people of all races, ethnicities and incomes. Yet even in our most economically vibrant cities, not all residents are benefiting from that growth, resulting in stark racial and economic disparities that are even more extreme in distressed communities. Join us for a virtual dialogue with Alicia John-Baptiste, SPUR President and CEO and Jennifer Bradley, Senior Fellow - American Cities at The Kresge Foundation in which they discuss the progress of the Shared Prosperity Partnership and how this work is informing the future of urbanism.
people standing next to a poster
Feb
2
Thu
Oakland

Reclaiming Indigenous Lands in Cities: Lessons From Oakland

Digital Discourse to
In September 2022, the City of Oakland announced its plans to return approximately five acres of city-owned land to Indigenous stewardship, in partnership with the Sogorea Te' Land Trust. Occupying the land for thousands of years, Chochenyo-speaking Ohlone people were forcibly removed from their lands during the 18th century by Europeans and their descendants. This returning of land through Indigenous stewardship would allow the Sogorea Te’ Land Trust to immediately start tending to the land, restoring it to its natural state, a cultural practice among other uses as determined by the trust. Learn more about how this reclamation unfolded and the lessons it holds for developing partnerships between tribal or Indigenous-led groups and government.
Senator Skinner chats with constituents.
Feb
2
Thu
Oakland

A Conversation with Senator Nancy Skinner [In-Person Program]

In-Person Event to
Elected to the California State Senate in 2016, following three terms in the California State Assembly, Senator Nancy Skinner is a social justice and climate change advocate and leader in the legislature. She currently chairs the Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Committee and the Joint Legislative Budget Committee and is vice chair of the Legislative Women's Caucus. In her six years in the senate, she has authored and successfully passed landmark legislation that has tackled housing affordability, criminal justice reform, income inequality and other issues. Join us for a one-on-one conversation with the senator to learn more about what she plans to accomplish this year and her outlook for the current legislative session.
Group of participants from the SPUR study trip watch a presentation on car-free Copenhagen in a brightly lit room with wooden furniture and posters
Feb
7
Tue
San Francisco + San José + Oakland

Saying “Hej” to New Ideas: Learning From Copenhagen

Special Program to
Every year, SPUR takes an annual study trip to another city to learn how other places address urban challenges. In 2022, SPUR traveled to Copenhagen, the canal-lined capital of Denmark that took big steps to reform its housing, government, transportation and climate goals after a brush with bankruptcy in the 1980s. The trip participants learned all about the Danes’ approaches to social housing, about their embrace of the bicycle, their goals for a zero-carbon future - but what’s changed since July of 2022, and how can the Bay area learn from it? Join us for this special forum to recap what we learned from the Danes, discover what challenges Copenhagen is still grappling with and what lessons we can apply here in the Bay Area.
construction in the distance
Feb
8
Wed
San Francisco

Occupation: Boundary: Art, Architecture and Culture at the Water

In-Person Event to
Join us for a book talk examining the ways that art and architecture activate the public realm. Occupation:Boundary features historical and contemporary images of architecture, landscape and urban design at the border between the city and the sea. At a moment that demands innovative approaches to the transformation of urban waterfronts, and strategies to foster resilient boundaries, architect Cathy Simon recounts her work and that of other designers at and around the water’s edge in service to the public realm.
View of Caltrain railyard, SF, with skyline and bay bridge in baxkground
Feb
9
Thu
San Francisco + San José + Oakland

A Conversation With Caltrans Director Tony Tavares

Digital Discourse to
Since June 2022, Tony Tavares has served as the 34th director of the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), where he manages a nearly $20 billion budget and 22,000 employees who oversee California's highways, bridges, airports and rail. Tavares, a civil engineering graduate, has held a number of positions in California's transportation sector, most recently director of the Caltrans Los Angeles District 7. Now, as Caltrans director, Tavares will advance efforts for safe and sustainable communities across the state. His people-first vision for California's transportation encompasses sustainability, equity, accessibility and safety across all modes of transit. Join us for a conversation with Director Tavares about that vision and his plans for implementing the Climate Action Plan for Transportation Infrastructure (CAPTI), road and congestion pricing, bus priority and express lane conversions, tearing down highways and avoiding the transit fiscal cliff.
Patrons purchase vegetables at a vegetable stand
Feb
9
Thu
San Francisco + San José + Oakland

Serving Health: How California Can Usher in the Future of Food-based Interventions in Medi-Cal

Digital Discourse to
Medically supportive food and nutrition interventions such as produce prescriptions, food pharmacies and medically tailored meals can improve healthcare outcomes and reduce healthcare costs for people across the state. Starting in 2022, California authorized a pilot program to cover these interventions under Medi-Cal. However, they are currently optional pilot services, meaning millions of individuals who could benefit from food-based interventions are left out. Fortunately, California has the opportunity during this legislative session to expand the benefits of these interventions. Join us for a discussion of what that action would mean, how it would work and who would benefit.
hetch hetchy
Feb
10
Fri
San Francisco + San José + Oakland

Water Equity, Affordability and Climate Change

Digital Discourse to
As California’s drought continues to worsen, residents across the state are facing a water affordability crisis. Water rate increases for Californians are expected to accelerate as the climate continues to change and the state’s infrastructure continues to age, further burdening low-income communities. But that outcome isn’t inevitable. Join us for a discussion of ways to curb water rate increases and mitigate the disproportionate impact on low-income customers, including greater water efficiency, better long-term planning and more equitable rate structures.
bart train
Feb
14
Tue
San Francisco + San José + Oakland

Better Together: Collaborating to Create the Future of Rail

Digital Discourse to
Transportation leaders throughout the San Francisco Bay Area are looking to invest in other modes of transportation, as well as deliver more efficient transportation design, scope and infrastructure. The Metropolitan Transportation Commission has been diligently working on a study that examines how rail agencies throughout the region can work collaboratively on larger rail projects and operations. Join us as we discuss the findings from this new Regional Rail Study with Metropolitan Transportation Commission staff and other transportation partners throughout the region, and learn what these findings mean for the future of rail transportation in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Wide view of Berryessa BART
Feb
15
Wed
San Francisco + San José + Oakland

New Ideas for Regional Planning in California

Digital Discourse to
In the last few years, California has spent more than $1 billion to support regional planning, including $600 million from regional early-action planning grants, $600 million for the Community Economic Resilience Fund, and $25 million for climate adaptation planning. Although the overall investment in “regions-up” planning is unprecedented, it remains insufficient. Given how many key planning issues in California require an approach that integrates housing, job location, climate adaptation, transit recovery, reduced vehicle travel and greenhouse gas emissions and more equitable economic development, some would like to further elevate the authority of regional agencies. Come hear the architects of this idea discuss the state of regional planning in California today and learn what else is needed to fully tackle the interconnected demands facing metropolitan regions.
Five Wounds National Portuguese Church - large white structure with red detailing - view from road
Feb
16
Thu
San José

Exploring the 28th Street/Little Portugal BART Station [Tour]

Tour to
BART Phase II will extend service to downtown San José with three new stations (plus another one in the City of Santa Clara). One of those stations, the 28th Street/Little Portugal station, will reside in San José’s Little Portugal, a community whose strong Portuguese and Latin American identities have made it a destination for arts, architecture, delicious food and a rich culture. The station will serve many multi-generational businesses and the beautiful Five Wounds Portuguese National Parish by connecting San José to Santa Clara, Richmond and San Francisco/Daly City. Join us to learn about the plans for the station area, including a review of approved transit-oriented communities (TOC) policies, the update to the city's Five Wounds Urban Villages Plan, and VTA's creation of a design development framework to shape future transit-oriented development on VTA properties.
folks riding on JFK drive
Feb
16
Thu
San Francisco

Where Is the Access? Making San Francisco's Parks Equitable for All

Digital Discourse to
San Francisco is known for its beautiful parks and open space, and their importance to social and physical wellbeing has only been emphasized by the pandemic. However, racist land use and housing laws and practices have led to inequitable access to safe parks and open space. According to a recent study by the Trust for Public Land, San Francisco's communities of color had 56 percent less nearby park space than white neighborhoods. Learn how community organizations in San Francisco are creating out-of-the-box solutions to provide opportunities for people of color, especially families and children, to enjoy parks and open space.
A slow street in San Francisco where pedestrians are walking, biking and scootering.
Feb
21
Tue
San Francisco + San José + Oakland

Making Micromobility Work in San Francisco

Digital Discourse to
Micromobility tools like bicycles, e-bikes, scooters and other small, wheeled devices offer people more options for traveling shorter distances. A number of cities have explored micromobility as a way to advance climate goals and lower traffic congestion. However, San Francisco has struggled to regulate and embrace micromobility for the public good. . San Francisco is starting a citywide planning process, the Active Communities Plan, to foster adoption of all forms of active mobility that can legally operate on bike lanes, be they human-powered or motor-powered. Join us to identify thought-provoking ideas to leverage micromobility to support the city’s mobility, climate, access and equity goals.
Many people sit outside eating at Pho Ha Noi in San Jose
Feb
22
Wed
San Francisco + San José + Oakland

Activating ARPA for BIPOC Owned Businesses

Digital Discourse to
The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) was signed into law in 2021, with the goal of speeding up the country's economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. ARPA put billions toward small business support and recovery, and it gave states billions more to help with economic shocks from the pandemic. This funding provides a unique opportunity to support business owners of color, who historically have been excluded from large government funding efforts. Join us for a panel discussion on how funders, local governments, and advocates can activate ARPA funding to support the long-term needs of small businesses of color.
Busses on Market Street, San Francisco
Feb
28
Tue
San Francisco + San José + Oakland

San Francisco’s Transportation Element and the General Plan

Digital Discourse to
How can San Francisco’s transportation system be transformed to equitably and efficiently get people where they want to go — while helping to meet the city’s safety goals, mitigate the affordability and housing crisis, and tackle the climate emergency? The San Francisco Planning Department is working on a new Transportation Element, last adopted in 1996, to modernize the city’s policies to address these issues. The renewal of the Transportation Element is part of the Planning Department’s larger initiative to update the city’s General Plan. Join us to learn more — and share your ideas! — about what will be in the Transportation Element and how the next generation of the General Plan and its elements will be shaped.
san francisco skyline
Feb
28
Tue
San Francisco

[Date & Time TBD] Closing the Affordability Gap on Electric Appliances: Affordable Decarbonization of Existing Buildings

Digital Discourse to
*Please note that the date and time for this forum is still to be determined. Once a date is set, this event page will automatically be updated. California urgently needs to convert to zero-emission building appliances to curb climate change and reduce the health impacts of fossil fuel appliances. Emissions from building appliances have flown below the radar for years as policymakers focused on reducing emissions from power plants and transportation. Although the climate and health benefits of converting to clean appliances are enormous, installing a new heat pump is typically more expensive than just replacing a broken gas appliance like-for-like. The incremental costs — in the range of thousands of dollars — can be prohibitive for low-income households. Moreover it’s possible that landlords of affordable rental units will raise rents when faced with a new additional expense. SPUR presents our findings from the report Closing the Affordability Gap on Electric Appliances, which presents insights on strategies to fill the affordability gap.
If, in order to participate in a SPUR event, you need auxiliary aids or services for a disability (e.g., qualified interpreter, qualified reader, written materials, taped texts) please submit your request five business days before the event to publicprograms@spur.org or 415-781-8726 x132. SPUR will work with you in identifying effective auxiliary aids or services that it can provide. If you need to cancel your request, please notify SPUR at least two business days before the event.