Senior Planner

Position Title:

Senior Planner


Real Estate


Development Planning


Director, Land Use Planning

Position Purpose

To provide impactful land use planning and urban design expertise to complex projects in the provincial real estate portfolio through professional analysis and advice, and by managing externally procured work, and being accountable for leading assigned special projects and strategic initiatives.

Key Function and Responsibilities

1. Provide expert planning analysis and advice to support complex initiatives.

  • Review Official Plans and site-specific applications  and recommend actions to protect and enhance government interests
  • Conduct site reviews to identify planning controls and opportunities for provincial lands
  • Educate internal and external stakeholders about planning, its process, and potential impact on project timelines and outcomes
  • Provide expert planning advice regarding site development potential to inform real estate valuations, marketing and rationalization plans
  • Carry out municipal planning approvals Be the public face of externally-focused projects; attend and lead public consultations; work with legal on determining presence at and developing strategy for Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) hearings and other negotiations



2. Manage planning consultants to deliver land use planning projects, meeting scope, budget and schedule.

  • Define scope and manage delivery of land use planning projects, including planning due diligence reports, optimal use studies, site selection, development feasibility assessments, and planning approvals, often including a range of additional supporting studies
  • Actively identify actual and potential risks to delivering the project and develop strategies to mitigate them
  • Develop and manage project scope, budget, and schedule in compliance with Infrastructure Ontario's standards and procedures
  • Manage externally procured consulting expertise and resolve issues. Monitor and provide direction to external consultants throughout the project to ensure project meets work plan, timeline and that deliverables are professionally defensible
  • Prepare briefing notes/reports and conduct briefing meetings to keep senior management and corporate communications informed on the status of assigned projects
  • Represent IO at internal and external meetings, as projects move through the municipal planning approval processes
  • Consult and negotiate terms and conditions of relevant agreements with municipalities and other public sector stakeholders
  • Resolve issues related to land use planning activities.  Provide expertise to management and develop potential options, in case the issues could not be resolved at a Senior Planner level
  • Lead or coordinate visual concept design modeling to represent site analysis, opportunities and constraints (including development type, siting, and yield); convey planning expertise graphically
  • Creatively lead non-traditional planning-related projects, leveraging vendor and non-vendor subject matter experts.
  • Assist in the management, evaluation and procurement of the Land Use Planning Vendor of Record model


3. Build and maintain positive working relationships with internal and external stakeholders and vendors to ensure successful project outcomes and client satisfaction.

  • Build solid partnerships and work closely with clients and stakeholders to ensure common understanding of objectives, timelines, and issue resolution process on all assigned projects
  • Monitor and resolve conflicts, priorities, and concerns among different stakeholders and present recommendations to achieve resolution
  • Mentor junior planning colleagues
  • Maintain a strong network of contacts at municipal and provincial levels and within the private sector community
  • Maintain a strong working relationship with the firms on the established Land Use Planning Vendor of Record 


4. Other duties as may be required


Education and Knowledge

  • Post secondary degree in Urban and Regional Planning or equivalent experience
  • A strong foundation in planning-related legislation (e.g. Planning Act, OPDA, EA Act, etc.) and the Ontario Municipal Board process
  • Membership in Ontario Professional Planning Institute (OPPI) and Canadian Institute of Planners is preferred.


  • Minimum of 7 years progressive land use planning experience; a combination of private and public sector experience is considered an asset
  • Experience managing complex and/or large-scale planning projects/initiatives with multiple stakeholders at various levels, including executives

Skills and Personal Attributes

  • Advanced analytical skills and the proven ability to evaluate and synthesize complex information, including technical and financial data
  • An expert specialization in an area of planning such as urban design, approvals, or site servicing is an asset
  • Strong project management, stakeholder management, and organization skills 
  • Strong relationship building, influencing, and negotiation skills and ability to work effectively within diverse teams of specialists across multiple sectors
  • Demonstrated ability to work with  a diverse group of public and private sector stakeholders to find positive solutions to complex issues
  • Advanced communication skills and proven ability to present complex information in clear, focused, and intelligible manner
  • Solid computer skills, including MS Office Suite of products; ability to graphically present design concepts is considered an asset
  • A creative personable to manage multiple priorities and to work in complex environment of evolving organization while maintaining client/stakeholder objectives.