Designing for Disturbance: Adapting the Wildland Urban Interface to Wildland Fire
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The frequency and severity of wildland fires have been increasing over the past decade, and are will continue to do so at increasing rates as the earth's climate changes. This inevitability has grave implications for the 72,000 communities currently located on the forests edge in the United States. With fire suppression costs soaring to over $3 billion annually and an increasing inability to protect life and property from wildland fire, substantial design considerations are necessary to attempt to integrate the built world into a landscape adapted to burn. The necessary adaption to changing climate will require substantial changes in fire management to cope with increasingly severe fire seasons. The built environment must adjust to accommodate and support these changes, adaptations that must occur on large and small scales. Proactive community planning and ignition resistant construction must be implemented together to fundamentally change the interaction between man and fire in the Wildland Urban Interface.