Welcome to BioGrounds!

BioGrounds is a project of the Cities + Nature class, PLAN 3860/6860, taught by Tim Beatley in the UVA School of Architecture. Similar to a BioBlitz, BioGrounds is a semester-long effort to unearth, discover, and celebrate the remarkable biodiversity and nature that exists all around us here on the University of Virginia Grounds. From birds to bats to bacteria, students will be watching, exploring, uncovering.

Undergraduate students are working in groups, assisted by graduate students, each aiming to observe and record a particular unique aspect or dimension of the natural world. Teams are tackling the question of how best to study their particular slice of nature, enlisting the help of scientists and UVA faculty with appropriate expertise.

BioGrounds will assemble and present a compelling picture of the rich and layered world of the non-human life that faculty and students share here, and will present this story through the portal of this website. The BioGrounds Blog is a forum for students to unveil and discuss their biological discoveries.

Eventually the work of the teams will be integrated into an online, interactive Google map. Beyond the work of our class, we hope that the BioGrounds website will serve as an ongoing repository for future data, studies, and class work that sheds light on the nature and biodiversity of the University.

Ultimately we hope that BioGrounds will help contribute to a new understanding of the land, buildings and spaces of the University, increasingly seeing them as home to a complex and wondrous web of life, which we are privileged to share and over which we must be careful stewards.