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Welcome to the UrbanSim Community Web Portal

UrbanSim is a software-based simulation system for supporting planning and analysis of urban development, incorporating the interactions between land use, transportation, the economy, and the environment. It is intended for use by Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs), cities, counties, non-governmental organizations, researchers and students interested in exploring the effects of infrastructure and policy choices on community outcomes such as motorized and non-motorized accessibility, housing affordability, greenhouse gas emissions, and the protection of open space and environmentally sensitive habitats. The UrbanSim Overview and a Wikipedia Article summarize its design and features. Detailed descriptions are available in the Documentation and ResearchPapers on this site. If you have questions about this project, contact Paul Waddell.

Visual of the Day

The UrbanSim project team at UC Berkeley, in collaboration with Purdue University, has been developing a new UrbanVision application that extends UrbanSim to provide 3D visualization, and scenario creation. It was used by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission in public workshops in the San Francisco Bay Area during January 2012, as part of the Plan Bay Area planning process to involve jurisdictions in the region in achieving the goals of state climate law SB 375 to use land use policies to meet greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets. We are beginning to plan for a release of UrbanVision once we have the opportunity to generalize it and test it appropriately. More on this emerging development over the summer of 2012.


Mar 29 Major NSF grant awarded to Berkeley for Big Data applications, including UrbanSim, with media coverage in LA Times and in the NY Times
Feb 3 OPUS 4.4.0 Stable Release now available: Release Notes; Download WindowsInstaller or go to Download for other platforms
Dec 15 TMIP Webinar 8: Scenario Planning and Visualization
Nov 6 TMIP Webinar 7: Modeling Real Estate Supply
Oct 7 TMIP Webinar 6: Modeling Real Estate Demand
Jul 4-6 European UrbanSim Workshop in Athens, Greece.
Jun 15 Research Papers updated with recent publications (please let us know if you have published a paper using UrbanSim and we will add it!)
Jun 15 Fourth and Fifth Travel Model Improvement Webinars now posted
Jun 10 OPUS 4.3.2 Stable Release Now Available: Go to Download to get it. See release notes for the changes.
Apr 14 Third Travel Model Improvement Webinar, on Scenario Planning and Visioning, now posted
Jan 23 OPUS 4.3.1 Stable Release Now Available: Go to Download to get it. See release notes for the changes.
Nov 17 Metropolitan Transportation Commission Approves New Project to Develop UrbanSim Visualization for SustainableCommunitiesStrategies
Sep 29 OPUS 4.3.0 Stable Release Now Available: Use the new WindowsInstaller, or go to Download for other platforms
Sep 27 JTLU Special Issue: Land Use-Transportation Modeling with UrbanSim
Sep 12 The UrbanSim Classroom contains lectures and exercises for learning UrbanSim
Sep 11 New NSF award to support 3D modeling of urban development
Jun 1 2010 Urban Simulation Conferences Completed in Berkeley and Zurich
Apr 21 UrbanSim can now be run using on Windows 64bit, overcoming memory constraints on Windows
Jan 26 New survey shows UrbanSim is the most widely used land use model by MPOs in the US
Jan 14 UrbanSim Forums are now open for business. These provide threaded discussions, polls and other features.


UrbanSim was initially designed by Paul Waddell in the mid-1990's, and implemented as a prototype in Oregon in 1998. It has been continuously refined and re-engineered since then with the cooperation of a Core Development Team, and a growing community of Research Collaborators contributes to the project. Its development has been made possible by generous support from the funders listed below. It is freely available on the Download Page as open source software using the GPL license. We do ask that users register on this website before downloading, so we can maintain some minimal information about the user community. Since its initial release in 1998, UrbanSim has increasingly been adopted for operational planning use in the U.S. and in Europe, Asia, and Africa, in planning agencies and in university research and educational settings. The user community and research collaborators directly and indirectly support the application and refinement of UrbanSim. This interactive web site provides a virtual meeting ground for users and developers of the system, with approximately half from the USA, and half from a rapidly growing list of countries:

Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, Czech Republic, Egypt, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Korea, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, Moldovia, Morocco, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovenia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, USA, Venezuela, Vietnam

If you are interested in using UrbanSim or collaborating on its further development, please register on this web site and join the community. If you have questions regarding UrbanSim or this web site, email Paul Waddell at waddell (at) or the mailing list.

State of the System

We use what is known as a Continuous Integration System to test and build the OPUS and UrbanSim software. As developers check in updates to the Subversion repository, this triggers a suite of tests that provide rapid feedback on whether those changes caused any tests to fail. This keeps the system continually in testing mode, and helps keep the code robust as it continues to evolve. To see what the state of the system is, follow the link below. Green lights mean that all the tests have passed for the package. A red light means one or more tests have failed.

Current Financial Support

We gratefully acknowledge financial support from the following organizations, which currently support the ongoing development of UrbanSim:

U.S. Federal Support National Science Foundation (Award abstracts)
  Federal Highway Administration
  University of California Transportation Center
U.S. Planning Agencies Durham - Chapel Hill - Carrboro Metropolitan Planning Organization
  Lane Council of Governments
  Maricopa Association of Governments
  Metropolitan Transportation Commission
  Oahu Metropolitan Planning Organization
  Puget Sound Regional Council
  Southeast Michigan Council of Governments
International Support European Research Council
  Korea Research Institute for Human Settlements

In addition to these current funders, we wish to acknowledge numerous Previous Funders that have supported the UrbanSim project.

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Topic revision: r81 - 06 Nov 2012 - 15:37:51 - PaulWaddell
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