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May 01, 2019

May 2019 Issue



Do you know a member who deserves to be recognized for their volunteer work and dedication to OPPI? Consider nominating them for a Member Service Award! OPPI's Member Service Awards recognize extraordinary service to the Institute by OPPI's volunteer leadership.
This can also include honouring a member for their accumulated service over a long period of time, performing a key or integral role with a special project or program, and representing OPPI and the planning profession extraordinarily well in a provincial or national forum.
The deadline for nominations is June 1. To submit a nomination, visit OPPI's website for more information and to fill out the nomination form.
Let your colleagues know you appreciate their hard work and dedication to OPPI. Don't let this opportunity to honour a special volunteer member of OPPI with this deserving recognition pass by. Nominate a Member today!


On April 9, OPPI's Indigenous Planning Perspective Task Force held an in-person meeting that was a culmination of several months of teleconferences. Numerous consultations with Indigenous peoples, and individuals with experience working for/with Indigenous peoples and communities, were conducted in the lead-up to this meeting as well. 
Coming out of the meeting, the Task Force is hard at work preparing its report to OPPI Council in June. More details will be shared with members once the report has been received and approved by Council, stay tuned. 
laptop.jpgOPPI is collaborating with CIP and the other PTIAs on the first ever, pan-Canadian compensation and benefits survey for the planning profession. OPPI members who are currently pursuing a career in planning will receive the survey via email soon. 
The survey will should take approximately 15 minutes to complete. It is being managed by Bramm Research and your submitted responses will go directly to Bramm Research. All responses are completely confidential and any personal or organization names will not be associated with responses. Once the survey is complete, we will share the results with members. 
OPPI encourages members to complete this survey. Your input is extremely valuable as it will be used to help understand the level and types of compensation earned by planners across Canada. Stay tuned for the survey. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact OPPI's Member Relations Manager, Rupendra Pant, at

Your Professional Journey

RPP-seal.jpgEach year, OPPI welcomes many new RPPs as members from a variety of backgrounds and levels of experience. Only Full Members of OPPI are authorized to use the RPP designation in Ontario.

Our newest RPPs followed and completed the certification process administered by the Professional Standards Board and will be receiving their certificates allowing them to practice as RPPs in Ontario.

We applaud your achievement, dedication and commitment to informing choices and guiding the public, decision makers and stakeholders on the journey to creating inspired communities. Learn more about our newest RPPs by visiting OPPI's website.



Each year, OPPI offers student scholarships - one for undergraduate students and another for graduate students. These scholarships recognize Student Members who make a valuable contribution to their communities and demonstrate leadership.

Please join OPPI in congratulating this year's scholarship winners:
  • The Ronald M. Keeble Undergraduate Scholarship: Ellen McGowan
  • The Gerald Carrothers Graduate Scholarship: Leena Lamontagne-Dupuis
In addition to their scholarships, our winners will be formally recognized in front of the planning profession at our 2019 Conference in October.
Catherine-Tran.jpgOPPI is pleased to announce Catherine Tran as our 2019-2020 Student Delegate, succeeding Keith Marshall, for a one-year term. Catherine previously served on OPPI's Student Liaison Committee (SLC) as one of Ryerson University's representatives. 

As OPPI's Student Delegate, Catherine will chair the SLC, which serves as a leadership network linking students across the six accredited planning schools to OPPI. The SLC meets throughout the school year, and working with their student colleagues, Catherine and the SLC will promote the benefits of membership in OPPI and events and programs targeted to students: OPPI's student scholarships, participation in our annual event, the Student Case Competition, and nominations for student representatives and our next Student Delegate.

In addition, Catherine will have the opportunity to participate in OPPI's Outreach Committee and help organize outreach events for students across the six accredited planning programs about the benefits of OPPI student memberships, becoming an RPP and careers in planning.

Please join us in thanking Keith Marshall for his volunteer service over the past year and welcoming Catherine onboard as OPPI's Student Delegate. We look forward to working with her and the SLC this year!

Building RPP

CPL-logo.jpgOPPI offers members Continuous Professional Learning (CPL) courses throughout the year to stay current with changes and developments in the planning profession and to stay informed about innovations and leading practices. The courses available in the spring are for all levels and members to earn CPL units. Please see the available courses below to learn more and register today: CPL requires the completion of 18 Learning Units each year. For more information on CPL, please visit OPPI's CPL webpage. To view all of OPPI's events, please visit our website for more information. 

Since 2000, OPPI employed a public affairs strategy that focused on providing almost 150 policy submissions for a variety of provincial legislation to inform the government of their proposed changes. Once submitted, the government could choose to accept or ignore the advice provided. After some careful thought, in 2018, OPPI decided it was time to update this strategy to ensure advocacy work and outreach to the government is as effective as possible. 
In updating its public affairs strategy, OPPI is focusing on three areas:
  • Leadership on "Mega Issues": proactively identifying key issues that transcend jurisdictions and borders that require future-forward planning guidance. The issues may vary from year to year but remain the focus of communications, CPL, knowledge exchange and the general work of OPPI.
  • Response to Current and Emerging Legislation and Policy: This area focuses on "planting a flag" on proposed or actual legislation and policy affecting the integrity of the profession and of the professional execution of the role of Registered Professional Planners. Additional focus will be placed on other planning and development issues where the approach is not to develop a consensus position of planners. Instead, OPPI will provide useful considerations and long-term perspectives in the public interest.  
  • Ongoing Support to Knowledge Development, Exchange and Learning: OPPI will provide an online forum for exchanging knowledge and ideas on opportunities, issues and situations facing planners. This could also include emerging items from a community of interest eager to develop knowledge on a particular topic. This knowledge and information exchange will also inform OPPI's ongoing Learning Strategy.
One of the areas members have expressed great interest in learning more about is the "plant the flag" area and how responses are developed by OPPI. Several factors go into a decision to develop a response, including:
  • The scope of the impact of the issue: is it affecting some, many or all planners?
  • Is the topic already known and of concern to planners?
  • Has OPPI solicited input from the membership broadly and regionally, convening strategy groups and/or joining efforts with partner organizations?
  • For issues that require a response (affecting professional standing or practice), did staff seek Council's timely input (or the Executive Committee input if the issue is pressing and Council is not available)?
OPPI appreciates the feedback it receives from members on our responses to recent legislation. As we continue with this new public affairs strategy, OPPI will endeavour to provide more information to members on the application of this strategy to responses that are developed. 

Knowledge Exchange


Originally adopted in Sweden in the 1990s, Vision Zero turns the road safety paradigm on its head by taking the risk out of the roadway. When collisions do occur, an intersection re-engineered with Vision Zero principles means everyone can get home safely. In this month's Planning Exchange Blog post, OPPI speaks with Cycle Toronto Executive Director, Jared Kolb, and with Assistant Planner - Cycling Infrastructure and Programs with the CIty of Toronto, Sibel Sarper and Brad Bradford, Toronto City Councillor for Beaches-East York and OPPI Candidate Member, about Vision Zero and its impact on road safety and planning.  
Click here to read more


Issue 3 of Y Magazine will focus on technology and its impact on planning. With the advent of new tools and platforms to use in researching and retraining, how does technology affect the practice of planning itself? How will the nature of planning be changed by the incoming generation of planners who seem to have been born with a smartphone in their hands?
OPPI is conducting an open call to members to solicit article ideas on this topic for articles in our third issue of Y Magazine. If you have a story to tell about a project you are working on that is related to this topic, have an article you would like to write, or have a suggestion about an item that OPPI should be focusing on for this issue, let us know by contacting our Editor, Carolyn Camilleri, for consideration in our third issue. 
OPPI is busy working on issue number two which will be out this summer. We aim to have issue three in members' hands by the fall. If you have any questions about Y Magazine, please contact Carolyn. 

OPPI is pleased to announce it has partnered with two leading climate change risk and adaptation organizations - the Ontario Centre for Climate Impacts and Adaptation Resources (OCCIAR) and Risk Sciences International (RSI) - to develop specialized training materials to enhance your professional competency in climate change risks, impacts and adaptation.
You are invited to contribute to this project. By filling out this brief needs assessment survey, you have the opportunity to share what your most important and immediate needs are for professional learning in this area. 
Additionally, OPPI is also seeking 6-8 volunteers to participate in an advisory committee for this project. The role of the Advisory Committee will be to provide oversight at regular intervals through the project's duration and provide insight from the perspective of a professional planner. We anticipate that advisors will be asked to provide 2-4 hours of time per month on average in review and consultation.
We seek candidates from a variety of backgrounds and experiences. The ideal committee will represent planning professionals with private sector, public sector, academic, rural, suburban, urban and Indigenous perspectives. Committee members should be active, Full or Candidate members of OPPI. To learn more about this opportunity, including how to apply, please click here. The deadline to complete the survey is May 3, 2019.

If you have any questions on the needs assessment survey or volunteer opportunity, please contact OPPI's Education Manager, Ryan Des Roches.
Supported by Natural Resource Canada's Building Regional Adaptation Capacity and Expertise (BRACE) Program. 

What You Need to Know

Heritage Toronto Award Nominations
Nominations are now open for the 44th Annual Heritage Toronto Awards. Commemorating achievements in four categories - outstanding built heritage projects, innovative public projects, recognizing community-based organizations and recognizing outstanding books about Toronto's history - the annual Heritage Toronto Awards bring together award nominees and city influencers from across its culture, development and policy-making communities. Nominations close on June 24. To nominate your project or community organization, visit Heritage Toronto's website

Coming Soon - A Duty to Consult Course for Members
Members interested in learning more about Duty to Consult and engaging Indigenous communities will be happy to hear that OPPI is working with Incite Planning to develop a Duty to Consult course for members: Building Relationships with Indigenous Peoples and Aboriginal Communities: What the Duty to Consult and Accommodate means to Planners. In this Continuous Professional Learning course, we will explore some of the worldviews, perspectives, communities and territories that belong to the First Peoples of this land. This will provide a context for understanding the meaning of planning in the multi-jurisdictional place we call Canada and role of planners in the so-called Duty to Consult and Accommodate. Members will be notified as more information about this course becomes available, so stay tuned!

2019 Building Bridges Conference
Members are invited on behalf of the Town and Gown Association of Ontario (TGAO) to Building Bridges 2019 at Brock University from June 3-6, 2019. The annual TGAO conference gathers stakeholders to discuss the issues surrounding campus and community relations and will focus on sharing ideas, experiences and methods of best practice. Registration is now open and members can take advantage of early bird registration until May 7. For more information on the conference and program, please visit

Call for Presentations for the Latornell Conservation Symposium
Many of today's economic, environmental, and social challenges are impacting the health of Ontario's natural resources and creating the need for us to re-think traditional approaches. To ensure healthy watersheds and people, we need to continue to look forward, adapt and find innovative new ways to protect our critical natural resources. At this year's Latornell Conservation Symposium, we're asking delegates to share their research and experiences in order to refresh, motivate and inspire the shifts we need to make in order to transform our approaches and match the pace at which our challenges change. All on a tight budget, of course. The call for presentations is now open and will remain open until May 10, 2019. Interested members can find more information on the Symposium website.

Participate in York University's Community Energy Planning Course
Register now to be the first to participate in a professional development course on Community Energy Planning. York University's Sustainable Energy Initiative is pleased to be partnering with Quest Canada, the Ontario Climate Consortium, and Karen Farbridge and Associates to deliver The Energy Conscious Community: An Energy Planning Course for Planning Professionals. The course was designed for professional land use planners to expand the skill-set needed to accelerate the integration of energy and climate policy into land use planning and their implementing development review processes. The course includes a mix of introductory online learning modules, and 2 days of in-person learning at York University on June 13th and 14th. Space in this inaugural course offering is highly limited (~20 spots) to enable interactivity in the in-person course delivery. OPPI is a promotional partner on this initiative. Learn more about this course by visiting York University's website. If you'd like more information, please feel free to contact Ian McVey.

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.

Please see the current active postings below:
  • Development Planner - NYX Capital Corp. (full time)
  • Planner II - City of Thunder Bay (full time)
  • Urban Designer - City of Vaughan (full time)
  • Planner II - King Township (full time)
  • Junior Planner - Township of North Kawartha (contract)
  • Resource Planner - Grand River Conservation Authority (full time)
  • Supervisor of Planning/Demographer - Toronto Catholic District School Board (full time)
  • Planner - Municipality of Dysert et al (full time)
  • Land Development Planner/Project Manager - Confidential (full time)
  • Land Use Planner (Junior) - A.J. Clarke and Associates Ltd. (a division of TULLOCH) (full time)
  • Manager of Community Planning - Town of The Blue Mountains (full time)
  • ...and many more!

Upcoming Events and Courses