Michael Tomlan

Cornell University



Michael A. Tomlan directs the graduate program in historic preservation planning. He teaches classes that deal with documentation techniques, fieldwork, preservation practice and urban change, the relationships between museums and the public, and preservation, planning, and religion. Tomlan is also involved in finance and economics. He serves as a member of the admissions committee of the Baker Program in Real Estate, is the faculty editor of the Cornell Real Estate Review, and offers courses in international cases and competitions. Tomlan is currently the chair of the board of Yosothor, based in Cambodia and serves as a project director for the National Council for Preservation Education; and president of Historic Urban Plans, Inc., Ithaca. He served for a decade as chair of the Senior Board of Advisers to the Global Heritage Fund (Palo Alto, California), reviewing nominations for and the management of conservation projects in Asia, the Middle East, and Central and South America. He has consulted on projects abroad for the World Monuments Fund, the J. Paul Getty Trust, and domestic redevelopments in Arizona, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee. Tomlan received his B.Arch. from the University of Tennessee, his M.S.H.P. from Columbia University, and his Ph.D. from Cornell.

Research Areas

"Adaptive reuse Architectural design Architectural history Architectural practice Architectural representation Architectural technology Collaborative practice Community-based planning and development Economic development Gender- and age-based planning Historic preservation planning Housing Infrastructure planning International studies in planning Landscape architecture NGOs Participatory and collaborative planning Planning history Real estate development Regional science Social policy Structures in architecture Suburban neighborhoods Sustainability Transportation planning Urbanism Visual representation"


Director of Historic Preservation Planning