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April 01, 2018

April 2018 Issue


On March 10, OPPI's Student Liaison Committee held its Student Case Competition at Ryerson University. The case study was provided by the City of Greater Sudbury. Six teams participated from several of the accredited planning programs, but there could only be one winner.

The team of Jo Fitzgibbons, Bishoi Shinoda, Zoe Milligan, Janelle Lee and Monika Oviedo from the University of Waterloo's Graduate planning program won this year's Student Case Competition with their submission for "InnoTech Park" in the City of Greater Sudbury. Congratulations to the winning team!

The winning team will be provided with complimentary registration to the 2018 OPPI Symposium in Sudbury on October 11-12, and the opportunity to present a case study session. In addition, the winning team will be asked to submit an article for the July/August issue of the Ontario Planning Journal and for our Planning Exchange blog.

OPPI wants to thank Ryerson University for the competition venue, the City of Greater Sudbury for providing the case study, all of our student participants and to our Student Liaison Committee for organizing this event.
As National Volunteer Week approaches the week of April 15-21, 2018, OPPI would like to thank the many volunteers who dedicate their time and interest in advancing the planning profession in Ontario.

Your contributions and leadership at our District events, in policy submissions, on our Program Committees, District Leadership Teams, Working and Strategy Groups and Task Forces help OPPI Council meet the goals of our INSPIRE OPPI Strategic Plan and promote the value of RPPs and the work you do in your local communities.

Your Professional Journey

Do you know a Member that should be recognized for their extraordinary service and contributions to OPPI? The time is quickly approaching to nominate Members for OPPI's annual Member Service Awards.

Stay tuned for more information on the nominations process and deadline. For more information on last year's Member Service Awards winners, please visit our Member Service Awards webpage.
In late March, the Ontario Government prorogued the legislature and delivered a Throne Speech to open a new session at the legislature. As a result of the prorogation and Throne Speech, all bills previously before the legislature, including Bill 122, died on the order paper and will need to be reintroduced. The government has pledged to do this for government bills so debate can continue, and OPPI remains hopeful Bill 122 is part of this plan.

Up until prorogation, we worked with our sponsor, and current Parliamentary Assistant to the Premier, MPP Ted McMeekin to get Bill 122 passed. The events happening at Queen's Park are outside of OPPI's control and are increasingly being influenced by the upcoming June election.

OPPI and Council is doing all we can to get this bill passed. We continue to work with MPP McMeekin and we hope to have positive news and a resolution to share with you before the legislature adjourns for the election.
Professional planners follow national professional standards administered by the Professional Standards Board for the Planning Profession in Canada (PSB). As the planning profession, and the world around it, becomes more complex, a rigorous, uniform and transparent process for becoming a practicing planner is vital.

The professional standards for planners focuses on three areas: competency (educational), ethical, and membership. Members must also practice in an ethical and responsible manner and uphold their
responsibilities to the public interest, clients and employers and the profession and other members.

In 2012, the Professional Standards Committee for the Planning Profession in Canada (PSC) was created by agreement between the Provincial and Territorial Institutes and Associations (PTIAs). The PSC is the body responsible for ensuring the professional standards across Canada remains relevant and prepares planners to meet increasingly complex demands.

In 2017, we notified members the PSC started a its first five-year review of the professional standards across Canada and reached out to each PTIA for feedback on its review. On behalf of OPPI, the Professional Standards & Registration Committee, chaired by David McKay, RPP, is handling this review for the organization and membership. It delegates a representative to the PSC providing Ontario-specific insight. OPPI's representative is Chris Tyrrell, RPP. Once this committee has reviewed the recommendations put forward, a report will be sent to OPPI Council with a recommendation for a formal response.

Once the PSC has consulted all of the PTIAs, they will finalize their report and circulate their recommendations to the same stakeholders. OPPI members will be advised when, and if, new standards are developed from the five-year review.

For more information, please visit our website or feel free to reach out to OPPI's Registrar, Brian Brophey, at

Building RPP

On March 22nd, OPPI's District Leadership Team came together for its Strategic Forum to focus on the development of a District strategy for 2019 and opportunities for co-creation of programs and events for Members.

The foundation for this strategy is the four strategic directions found in the INSPIRE OPPI Strategic Plan 2020.

Members came together from across Ontario to identify several key initiatives to focus on in 2019, including:
  • How to recognize new RPPs across Ontario
  • How to educate and create discussion about the Building Better Communities and Conserving Watersheds Act (Bill 139) using local perspectives
  • Leveraging Conference themes and topics as educational opportunities in the Districts
  • Events focused on the "mega themes" planners must tackle that transcend District boundaries and have an effect on everyone in Ontario
Thank you to everyone who attended our Forum. Stay tuned for more information throughout the year as the 2019 strategy is finalized and ready to implement. If you are interested in joining your local District, visit our Districts webpage for more information.

Knowledge Exchange

In this month's Planning Exchange blog post, Kathy Suggitt, RPP, highlights a recent example of planners working together to navigate the approvals process of the County of Simcoe's Official Plan and the lessons learned from this experience.

Have you ever felt that sinking feeling as you prepare for an Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) hearing? Ever felt like it's all in the hands of the lawyers? If only the planners could just get together and find solutions without the legal process taking over. The OMB hearing process for the County of Simcoe's Official Plan did just that.
The Building Better Communities and Conserving Watersheds Act, 2017 (Bill 139) creates sweeping and fundamental changes that significantly affect the planning profession and process in Ontario. RPPs help community stakeholders and decision makers develop a 360 degree perspective before any major decisions are made based on extensive knowledge, experience and skill. This is why it is crucial for RPPs to learn all they can about the Act.

On April 12 from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm, WeirFoulds LLP and OPPI together invite you to an interactive lunch program to discuss the new standard of review and appeal process under the Act.

Our panelists will review:
  • Overview of the changes to the Act including new elements, general changes and transition
  • Appeals (rights, limits, changes to, and sheltering of appeals)
  • Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPATs) and Regulations
  • How to address the new Standard of Review in Planning Reports
If you are interested and would like to RSVP for the livestream, please click here.

Please note: There is no charge for this livestream. If you have any questions about the livestream, please email
Ontario communities experience and will continue to experience challenges, whether it is through adverse effects of climate change, economic uncertainly, and much more.

If you are interested to learn about how your professional planning colleagues are preparing for a variety of uncertainties, and how this can inform your work, register for #OPPI18: Community Readiness!

If you register today for #OPPI18:
  • You qualify for the early bird discount and save 14 percent off the cost of registration
  • Get priority access to our mobile workshops, the most popular sessions at our event
Our host city is the City of Greater Sudbury - a northern city built on resilience and ingenuity. There is no better place to explore the theme of community readiness. Don't take our word for it, learn more about Sudbury's unique identity from the Sudburians and We Live Up Here!

Don't miss out on our early bird discount and register for Ontario's most popular and talked about planning event of the year! Follow OPPI on social media and use the hashtag #OPPI18 in your posts about our Symposium.

Stay tuned as more mobile workshops, interactive training sessions and keynote speakers are announced!

What You Need to Know

Sponsor #OPPI18
Are you interested in sponsoring #OPPI18? Becoming a sponsor offers a unique opportunity to support Member Continuous Professional Learning and profile and promote your organization to the over 500 attendees expected and to our 4,500 members! There are many ways to get involved, contact OPPI today for sponsorship opportunities.

Call for submissions for July/August OPJ
Are you a student or educator working on research of a project you just want to tell the entire planning profession about? You're in luck! Submissions for student projects and work for the July/August issue of the Ontario Planning Journal is due by May 15, 2018. Step up and tell everyone about the great work you're doing! Please email submissions to

UofT Friends of Planning Spring Social 2018
On April 12, the University of Toronto Planning Alumni will welcome guests to their 22nd Annual Friends of Planning Spring Social. A keynote address will be made by Elliott Cappell, Chief Resilience Officer for the City of Toronto, titled "Elasti-City: Resilience in Times of Urban Change." For more information and ticket prices, please visit our event webpage.

Ryerson University and Canadian Brownfields Network Survey
Ryerson University and the Canadian Brownfields Network is conducting a survey to get a comprehensive snapshot of what is happening with brownfields in Canada with government, the private sector and at the community level. Members have until April 15 to fill out the survey.

Healthy Communities by Design Survey
The Healthy Communities by Design, Active Apartment Neighbourhoods project is looking for five RPPs to attend two 2-hour lunch/evening sessions to assist with the development of professional guidance for resident-led design of low-income apartment towers in Toronto. Members who are interested can visit the Healthy Communities by Design website or email Gayle Bursey.

Register and attend the 2018 IAFNAC conference in Ottawa
How can facilitators positively contribute to organizations, communities, and the world in transition? Register for IAFNAC 2018 with the promo code "OPPI50R" and learn more about this great event!

Shade Bootcamp Workshop
Did you know that shade is one of the effective means for preventing skin cancer? OPPI is a promotional partner of a one-day bootcamp workshop on May 1, where participants will be able to hear from global and local experts and exchange ideas on best practices for shade design and policy. Learn from case studies and discuss challenges and opportunities for creating shade in your local community. Register today!

Public Health and Planning 101 Course
Don't miss this free online course, brought to you by OPPI, the Ontario Public Health Association and the Public Health Agency of Canada. Developed by volunteers and staff, and inspired by research and user feedback, this introductory level course is designed to bridge the gaps between both professions, as well as provide greater opportunities for developing collaborative partnerships to help create and foster healthy built environments. Learn more and sign up today!

Toronto Local Appeal Body Public Consultation
The Toronto Local Appeal Body (TLAB) is seeking input on the review of its rules of practice and procedures. The deadline for public submissions is April 6 and public consultations take place on April 18. For more information visit our Legislative Corner webpage or

Career Opportunities

Advertise your available planning positions with OPPI's Job Postings. There is no better way to reach qualified planning professionals.
Targeted to planners, search the OPPI Job Ads to save you time and effort when looking for a new position.
Search Now
Please see the current active postings below:
  • Planner II, Heritage - City of Pickering (full time)
  • Waterfront Plan Update - City of Cornwall (RFP)
  • Director of Planning & Development - Township of King (full time)
  • Property and Planning Assistant - The Bruce Trail Conservancy (contract)
  • Planner - Township of Drummond/North Elmsley (full time)
  • Team Leader, Long Term Planning - City of Mississauga (full time)
  • Site Development Planner - City of London (full time)
  • Executive Director - Greater Ottawa Home Builders' Association (full time)
  • Comprehensive Official Plan & Provision of Planning Services - Township of Edwardsburgh Cardinal (contract)
  • Manager, Policy Planning - City of Ottawa (full time)
  • Planner II - City of London (full time)
  • Senior Planner - GSP Group Inc. (full time)
  • Senior/Intermediate/Junior Planners - MHBC Planning (full time)
  • Planner or Intermediate Planner - Innovative Planning Solutions (full time)
  • Municipal Planner (18-24 month contract) - The Corporation of the Municipality of Temagami (contract)
  • Land Use Planner - Kativik Regional Government (KRG) (full time)

Upcoming Events and Courses

  • Public Health and Planning 101: An Online Course for Public Health and Planning Professionals to Create Healthier Built Environment
  • Northern District Managing Assets for Sustainable Communities (April 4)
  • 2018 Farmland Forum (April 5)
  • Eastern District Urban Workshop: Planning for Health in the Built Environment (April 5)
  • Lakeland District Mayor's Attainable Housing Forum (April 6)
  • UofT Friends of Planning Spring Social 2018 (April 12)
  • SHADE Bootcamp - Shade design and UVR protection (May 1)
  • IAFNAC 2018 Conference (May 2)
  • Understanding Legislation for Planners OPPI Course (May 4)
  • Planner as a Facilitator OPPI Course (May 10-11)
  • Managing Skills for Professional Planners OPPI Course (May 11)
  • Project Management for Planners OPPI Course (June 8)
  • Applied Project Management OPPI Course (June 22)