Two kids running in the snow. We all need nature—and nature needs you. Together, we can protect the wildlife and wild lands of Massachusetts for generations to come. Make a tax-deductible donation today.
Two kids running in the snow. We all need nature—and nature needs you. Together, we can protect the wildlife and wild lands of Massachusetts for generations to come. Make a tax-deductible donation today.

iPlan: Mapping the Future

iPlan logo

iPlan is a free, online land-use planning game that allows learners to construct, investigate, and solve simulated urban and regional planning problems.

Suitable for use on smart phones, tablets, Chromebooks, and laptops, the game allows learners to explore the impacts of land-use decisions in their own local contexts.

The system uses geospatial data, ecological and economic models, and optimization routines to transform any location in the contiguous United States into an interactive land use planning simulation.

Players construct rezoning plans that address socioeconomic and environmental issues, and their plans are evaluated by virtual stakeholders who advocate for different community priorities.

In addition to being an innovative learning tool, iPlan promotes development aligning with many NGSS Learning Standards, including:

  • Asking questions and defining problems
  • Developing and using models 
  • Analyzing and interpreting data 
  • Using mathematical and computational thinking
  • Planning and carrying out investigations
  • Constructing explanations and designing solutions
  • Engaging in argument from evidence 
  • Obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information

Getting Started

If you're interested in using iPlan with students either in or out of school, please let us know by completing this short sign-up form.

Check out our Quick Start Guide or download our Curriculum Guide, which includes sample lessons.

download iPlan Curriculum Guide (381.1 kB)

Try iPlan Now

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to email us.

Our Partners

Mass Audubon works with the Epistemic Analytics group at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, which developed the land-use planning educational iPlan: Mapping the Future tool with funding from the National Science Foundation.