As the 2016 OPPI Symposium in Hamilton draws near, planners from around Ontario will gather to learn and share ideas around Planning for the Public Realm. In concert with this, OPPI is releasing a Call to Action that encourages planners, designers, the various levels of government, municipal departments and agencies, other related professionals and members of the public to make the public realm a focus in community building and placemaking efforts across Ontario.
Picture yourself standing on a city street corner.

You are absorbing the sounds of people, traffic and the hum of the unfamiliar city around you. How do you go about navigating this space, understand where you are and how to get where you want to go? Are there signs nearby that clearly indicate the street names, are they close and easy to read, are they consistently located? Are there maps that indicate your location and nearby amenity?
New Ontario Building Code ("OBC") amendments to permit six-storey wood-frame construction were enacted early in 2015, creating considerable buzz from developers trying to gain a competitive advantage, as well as planners looking to introduce a mid-rise and mixed-use development format into challenged urban environments. The amendments increase the permitted height for multi-residential, commercial office, and other mixed-use format developments from the previous four-storey cap.
Achieve the drop of standards versus the established guidelines by being prepared to pioneer a new solution when historical design standards may not apply to contemporary objectives in street design. Incorporate stakeholder involvement with innovation in the form of interactive workshops and great visual representations.

Curate The City

February 01, 2016 | Posted by OPPI | Post Contributed by Mojan Jianfar, on behalf of The STEPS Initiative | capacity building, Community, community design, community engagement, Engagement, healthy communities, Public Art, public realm | 0 comments
Curate The City
Construction boarding lines our streets for up to five years. An otherwise unwelcome disruption can be used as a blank canvas to engage local citizens in community building activities. With momentum building among Toronto's city councillors to require public art on these vacant spaces, there is a growing demand for public art from Council, as well as the public, and the opportunity to transform them into an outdoor gallery for residents and visitors alike.

Walking Toward the Future

November 02, 2015 | Posted by OPPI | Post Contributed by Dan Burden and Rob Voigt, RPP | active transportation, blue zones, community design, community engagement, healthy communities, placemaking | 3 comments
Walking Toward the Future
In the week that preceded the recent OPPI conference in Toronto, Dan Burden (Honorary Member of OPPI) and I (Robert Voigt, MCIP, RPP) had a number of conversations about the future of planning. As friends and colleagues we enjoy these discussions and the inspiration we derive from them.

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Planning Exchange LogoThe Planning Exchange blog exists to facilitate the exchange of planning knowledge, best practices and issues important to planners, as identified by OPPI’s Learning Strategy. OPPI wants to foster meaningful and respectful discussion about planning issues, while simultaneously supporting members in the development and maintenance of their competencies as professional planners.

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