The Canadian Institute of Planners (CIP) is the national association for professional planners. The Institute is constituted by a membership of planning professionals across Canada, and has been dedicated to the advancement of responsible planning since 1919. Members are governed by a Code of Professional Practice outlined by the CIP, and must adhere to the ethics contained therein or be subject to investigation.
In Ontario, the provincial affiliate is known as the Ontario Professional Planners Institute (OPPI). Members of the Institute have the designation: Registered Professional Planner (RPP), and are qualified to provide an expert planning opinion on matter before the Ontario Municipal Board. Members are governed by a Professional Code of Conduct outlined by the Ontario Professional Planners Institute, and must adhere to the ethics contained herein or be subject to investigation.
"Planning" means the scientific, aesthetic, and orderly disposition of land, resources, facilities and services with a view to securing the physical, economic and social efficiency, health and well-being of urban and rural communities.”
In the context of land use planning and the services provided by our firm, perhaps a simpler definition of planning might be:
“Planning may be described as the process through which changes to the structure associated with the physical organization and use of land in the urban and rural environment are managed”
Implicit in this definition is the notion that change has implications for not only the physical environment, but the human / social environment that occupies space within our urban and non-urban (rural) areas as well. In this regard, all groups within society are affected by the process of change and therefore must be considered in the planning processes that manage the changing urban and non-urban environments.
Intrinsic to the notion of Planning is the idea that "Planning" is the art of compromise, or the management of change, such than society's vision for the future may be realized.
Responsible planning has always been vital to the sustainability of safe, healthy, and secure urban environments. Canada's population is growing and, with more people migrating from rural to urban areas, the planning profession must increasingly deal with urbanization issues, such as:
• conversion of land from natural habitats to urban built areas,
• maintenance and use of natural resources and habitats,
• development of transportation related infrastructure,
• ensuring environmental protection.
Not only do planners deal with land use, but also:
• planning social and community services,
• managing cultural and heritage resources,
• creating economic capacity in local communities,
• addressing transportation and infrastructure,
• work internationally.
A Registered Professional Planner accredited by OPPI has a university degree, usually in planning or a related area, has a minimum of three years of responsible planning experience, and has met rigorous examination standards.
Registered Professional Planners are required to follow OPPI's Professional Code of Practice. If a planner fails to live up to the Code's ethics and a client complains, OPPI will investigate the matter and, if necessary, discipline the planner.
Planners are available to work with homeowners, developers, municipalities, heritage preservation associations, and community and environmental groups. OPPI offers guidelines for individuals and groups seeking to hire a professional planner.
Planners who are not members of OPPI may practise in Ontario, but they may not call themselves Registered Professional Planners and OPPI does not regulate their activities or ethics.
OPPI maintains a directory of Registered Professional Planners in Ontario who are available for consulting work. To use the directory, specify the kind of planner you need (land use, environmental, transportation, etc.) and the location. (Source: OPPI)
For further information and/or to discuss your land use project requirements in confidence, please Contact Us today.