Skip to Main Content

September 01, 2018

September 2018 Issue


We are halfway through our INSPIRE OPPI Strategic Plan 2020. We have accomplished much, but we have an opportunity to refocus and chart a new path forward. When I think about our opportunity to refocus, two words come to mind - resiliency and persistence. In my mind, they are essential ingredients to success for OPPI.

Resiliency is that quality that allows people and organizations to recover quickly from any challenges, and move forward positively. And persistence because OPPI continues to take a course of action, led by our Strategic Plan, that engages members and seeks opportunities to provide a benefit to you from our work.

To read OPPI President, Jason Ferrigan's message to members and the full 2018 Annual Report, please visit OPPI's website.

On OPPI's Annual Report webpage, members can find information about our upcoming AGM, including the meeting agenda, financial summary and much more. Members received the official AGM notice from OPPI in late August via email and do not have to register for the 2018 Symposium to attend the AGM.

Do you use a drone in your planning work? Have you given any thought to the positives/negatives to the Sidewalk Labs neighbourhood on Toronto's waterfront? Or how to provide or collect planning information and details as part of an open data initiative?

In your work, you gather and analyze information from all sides of an issue. RPPs need to be able to understand what is coming in the future and how it applies to their local communities, especially in instances adopting and adapting technology in your roles.

On Thursday, September 20, at 12:00 p.m., join OPPI President Jason Ferrigan on Twitter as he answers your questions and discusses the issues planners face as technology transforms the role of planning and of RPPs. Please visit OPPI's website for more information.

Your Professional Journey

OPPI is seeking an update to its By-Law, specifically to its complaints and discipline process. An updated process allows OPPI to set a framework that enhances and improves the effectiveness of the current practice.

Currently, OPPI has a single Discipline Committee which receives, investigates, and (in rare cases) holds formal hearings regarding complaints.

With an updated By-Law, OPPI will become like other professional regulators, and have two separate committees - a Complaints Committee to screen and handle complaints and decide whether they should be referred to the Discipline Committee that may hold a formal hearing and render a decision.

Voting on the proposed amendments to OPPI's by-law will begin on Thursday, September 6, 2018 and will close on Thursday, October 4, 2018 at 5:00 p.m.

Practicing Candidate, Full and Retired Members will receive an electronic ballot and are eligible to vote on the proposed By-Law changes. The results will be announced at OPPI's AGM on October 11, 2018.

To review the proposed By-Law changes and our Frequently Asked Questions, please visit OPPI's website.
The six Ontario universities offering accredited planning programs will welcome OPPI's Outreach Committee in September to speak with planning students directly. Outreach Committee members introduce and welcome student members to the planning profession and OPPI community, and help support the journey of planning students as they complete each academic year and transition to the working world and Candidate membership.

Student members interested in learning more about OPPI and the work of our Outreach Committee can speak to:
  • Pam Duesling, RPP
  • Ali Ryder, RPP
  • Aslam Shaikh, RPP
  • Christine Furtado
  • Alisha Cull, RPP
  • OPPI Student Delegate Keith Marshall
In addition to the Outreach Committee, OPPI's Student Liaison Committee (SLC) play an important role and vital link to planning students in each accredited planning program. Every year, student packages are prepared by OPPI and distributed by SLC reps. If students have any questions about OPPI and student membership, SLC members are the people to reach out to! Learn more about your SLC and OPPI's representatives on campus by visiting OPPI's website.

To all returning student members, OPPI would like to welcome you back and wish you all the best on another successful school year as you continue your planning studies!

Building RPP

OPPI's website is undergoing a makeover as part of our communications strategy!

The most significant change members will see on our new website is that it will speak to a wider audience beyond the planning profession to tell easily identifiable and relatable stories through the introduction of case studies.

OPPI will present an issue and a solution (if available) to generate discussion, elevate the importance and understanding of the RPP designation and the role Ontario's planners have in community development.

Through these examples, OPPI will take this opportunity to educate and position RPPs as thought leaders and voices to listen to within the larger discussions taking place in communities across Ontario.

More information about the launch of the new website will be shared with members in the coming weeks, so please stay tuned. If you have any website-related questions or feedback you would like to share, please contact OPPI at
Earlier this year, OPPI notified members that we will be introducing a new publication to replace the Ontario Planning Journal. OPPI would like to provide an update and introduce members to our new publication... Y Magazine!

Through the stories we present, OPPI will attempt to answer a fundamental question in the planning profession - why? The question "why?" shows interest and generates curiosity.

The letter Y symbolizes a choice of two paths, decision-making, guiding and a way forward - abilities and expertise RPPs use to navigate between paths and help inform choices and inspire communities.

Y Magazine is also going to be about the discussions planners are engaged in, and the informed choices and inspired communities that happen as a result. We will provide concrete examples readers can relate to, and how these projects and thoughts are developed, that will increase the understanding of the role of planners.

In addition to a new name and outlook, we're also slimming down. Instead of publishing six issues a year, we will publish quarterly for a total of four issues, and on the following topics in 2019:
  • Q1 - Rapid or Uneven Growth
  • Q2 - Climate Change Adaptation
  • Q3 - Technology and its Impact on Planning
  • Q4 - New Challenges and Emerging Issues
Existing advertisers will be receiving our updated advertising kit shortly to renew for 2019. If you or your organization is interested in advertising in Y Magazine, please contact OPPI at

OPPI will be sharing more information with members in the coming weeks, so stay tuned. If you have any questions or feedback you would like to share, please email

Please note: the image used in this article is for illustrative purposes.
Back in January, OPPI notified members of the Excellence in Planning awards program being placed on hiatus. OPPI would like to provide an update to members on the awards program.

OPPI recognizes member recognition is a vital component to the membership experience. We reached out to members who were previous nominees, winners and jurors and asked for their feedback on the existing awards program and what a revamped program should look like.

The feedback received by OPPI was very helpful. Our focus will turn to revamping our recognition program based on member feedback and best practices, and aim to launch our new recognition program in 2020.

As a result, in 2019, a modified version of our existing recognition program will be offered to members, in specific categories: student scholarships, Member Service Awards and (if needed) Honorary Member. OPPI will have more to share with members in 2019.

Knowledge Exchange

In this month's Planning Exchange blog, the City of Brampton describes the development of their Culture Master Plan and how challenging it can be to define "culture" in a city with 234 distinct ethnic backgrounds and 115 languages spoken, and fuelled by 14,000 newcomers each year.
Are you battling to get momentum on infills, alternative modes, and sustainability planning initiatives? Approving a new subdivision? Do you think that asset management is the engineer's job?

OPPI and the Canadian Institute of Planners (CIP) free pre-Symposium workshop entitled Managing Assets for Sustainable Communities is for you!

This workshop identifies the importance of asset management to planners and elected officials, and will provide you with a crash-course in asset management concepts. Participants will be enabled to engage proactively in one of the hottest local government topics of the next decade. Register today and help prepare your community.

Funded through Infrastructure Canada and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities' Municipal Asset Management Program (MAMP), this event is hosted by the Canadian Institute of Planners (CIP) in proud partnership with OPPI.
OPPI staff and volunteers have been hard at work over the summer refining and fine tuning the next generation of our Learning Strategy.

While the inaugural strategy (launched in 2014) focused on the development of new learning infrastructure to aid members in attaining their annual Continuous Professional Learning (CPL), the new strategy shifts its focus to the use of existing infrastructure and OPPI members to facilitate the exchange of knowledge for the betterment of planning in Ontario.

The new Learning Strategy will be available soon; stay tuned for more details.

What You Need to Know

Call for Applicants for the Canadian Red Cross
RPPs are the experts that gather and analyze information from all sides of an issue and inform elected officials, decision makers, the public and stakeholders to build inspired communities. Members have an opportunity to export this knowledge nationally and internationally by helping the world's largest humanitarian network build resilient communities after disasters. The Canadian Red Cross is looking to expand its register of professionals that can be eventually deployed as delegates in responses within Canada and abroad. If members are interested in putting their names forward to assist the Red Cross, please click on any of the links below to apply: Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Delegate Shelter and Settlement Delegate Construction Delegate

Dalhousie University Rental Housing Survey
Dalhousie University is looking for members to participate in a study on rental housing in 15 Canadian cities. The study aims to improve the understanding of policies and programs intended to protect and expand the municipal supply of rental housing. For more information, please visit the survey webpage.

Living City Foundation Awards
The Living City Foundation recognizes outstanding groups and individuals who have enriched communities in TRCA's jurisdiction through a notable project or accomplishment. Members have the ability to submit nominations for two awards: the Charles Sauriol Leadership Award 2018 and Living City Impact Awards. Nominations close in early September. Please contact The Living City Foundation for more information.

Sustainability Network's Online Economic Literacy Training for Environmental Leaders
How can planners plan for the green economy? OPPI is a promotional partner of the Sustainability Network's online Economic Literacy Training for Environmental Leaders workshop. Join ecological economist and York University professor, Eric Miller, as he takes you through six workshops on economic literacy for non-profit leaders this fall at the new Centre for Social Innovation. Register before October 2 and learn how to apply this knowledge in your local community.

CUI 2018 Ontario Excess Soil Symposium
OPPI is a promotional partner of the Canadian Urban Institute's (CUI) Ontario Excess Soil Symposium in December. Members interested in attending will be able to hear feature lessons and successful case studies about the successful management of excess soil in Ontario, and discuss recent updates in policy and regulation. For more information, please visit CUI's website.

OAA Annual Conference
The Ontario Association of Architects (OAA) is inviting individuals and organizations to submit proposals for Continuing Education sessions held at the 2019 OAA Annual Conference. The three-day event takes place in Québec City from May 22 to 24, bringing together Ontario architects, interns, students, engineers, interior designers and other allied professionals. The deadline for submissions is October 1. Visit the Call for Presenters webpage to learn more about the opportunities and process.

Oak Ridges District Walk and Talk with York Region's Chief Planner
York Region is changing! OPPI's Oak Ridges District, in partnership with York Region, is hosting a walking tour of the Vaughan Metropolitan Centre (VMC) entitled Walk and Talk with York Region's Chief Planner. The VMC is one of York Region's fastest growing urban centres where future growth is being directed. Please visit OPPI's Events Listings for more information on this and other events happening throughout September.

Career Opportunities

Are you listed in OPPI's Consultant's Directory? If you're not in,
it's time to get in! If you're looking to do some consulting on the
side or looking for RPPs to work with for that big project you're
leading, and everything in between, OPPI's Consultant's
Directory is for you. Sign up today and get listed!
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:
  • Senior Planner - The Corporation of the Town of Niagara-on-the-Lake (full time)
  • General Manager of Development Services - Town of East Gwillimbury (full time)
  • Senior Planner - City of Pickering (full time)
  • Transportation Planner - City of Mississauga (full time)
  • Urban Designer - The Corporation of the Town of Whitby (full time)
  • Project Manager - Vaughan Metropolitan Centre - Development Planning - City of Vaughan (full time)
  • Senior Planner - Otonabee Conservation (full time)
  • Active Transportation Coordinator - Town of Ajax (full time)
  • Planner - Township of Drummond/North Elmsley (full time)
  • Policy Planner 2 - Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville (full time)
  • Planner I and Planning Coordinator - The Corporation of The County of Prince Edward (full time)
  • Applications Technician, Inland Hub - County of Bruce (full time)
  • Planner II - Urban Design (Zoning Section) - Town of Richmond Hill (contract)
  • Team Lead, Planning - South Nation Conservation Authority (SNC) (full time)
  • Approvals Specialist - South Nation Conservation Authority (SNC) (full time)
  • Municipal Planner I - City of Clarence-Rockland (full time)
  • Planning Researcher - Zoning Section - Town of Richmond Hill (contract)
  • Research and Policy Analyst - The Regional Municipality of York (contract)
  • Senior Planner - City of Toronto (full time)
  • Planner II - City of London (full time)
  • Manager, Policy & Environment - Regional Municipality of York (full time)
  • ...and many more!

Upcoming Events and Courses

  • The Principles of Traffic and Transportation - 20-week evening lecture series (September 12)
  • Creating the Isabel: An architect-led tour of the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts (September 13)
  • Toronto District TTC Accessibility and Planning Challenges (September 13)
  • Ontario Traffic Council New Mobility Workshop (September 14)
  • Heritage Planning for Practitioners (September 14)
  • 14th Annual MYPAC Social (September 20) How to create engaging sessions (for OPPI Symposium presenters) AM session (September 26)
  • How to create engaging sessions (for OPPI Symposium presenters) PM session (September 26)
  • Oak Ridges District Walk and Talk with York Region's Chief Planner (September 26)
  • Toronto District Film Screening & Panel Discussion - Accidental Parkland (September 26)
  • How to create engaging sessions (for OPPI Symposium presenters) AM session (September 27) - SOLD OUT
  • How to create engaging sessions (for OPPI Symposium presenters) PM session (September 26)