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Leah Birnbaum, Urban Planning Consultant




Planner, Mediation Pilot Project
City of Toronto, 2017
The City is piloting a mediation program to assist in resolving disputes related to minor variance and consent applications. I provide neutral professional planning advice to the parties and the mediators. I wrote an article on the mediation program for the Ontario Planning Journal.

Bloor West Village Avenue Study
City of Toronto, 2017
I am the senior planner with the team preparing an Avenue Study for Bloor Street West between Keele Avenue and the Humber River. Led by DTAH, with R.E. Millward and Associates.

Autonomous Vehicles in the GTHA
Transform: Transportation and Land Use Planning Research Laboratory at Ryerson University, 2017
I facilitated a series of focus groups to explore participants' interest in and attitudes towards driverless cars and synthesized the results into a summary report (forthcoming).

Adjunct Lecturer
Ryerson University School of Urban and Regional Planning, Fall, 2016
I designed and taught a seminar on regional planning to undergraduate students at the School of Urban and Regional Planning.

Study on OMB Reform
Client: Regional Planning Commissioners of Ontario, 2016
I researched and wrote a report with recommendations for how to reform the Ontario Municipal Board in advance of the provincially mandated OMB review. With Urban Strategies Inc. Final report: Reforming the Ontario Municipal Board: Five Actions for Change.

Built Form Study for Yonge + Eglinton
Client: City of Toronto, 2016
I am a sub-consultant to Perkins + Will for a study of the built form in the Yonge + Eglinton neighbourhood. The study will result in policy recommendations to update the City of Toronto's secondary plan for Yonge + Eglinton.

Project on Regional Resilience
Client: University of Toronto, 2015
I managed a research project that brought together experts various fields to discuss issues of fiscal, environmental, economic and social resilience for the Greater Golden Horseshoe region. This project was funded by a grant from the Places to Grow Implementation Fund. I am second author on the resulting academic publication, Toward Regional Resilience in Toronto: From Diagnosis to Action.

Writer: Site Plan Control manual
Client: City of Guelph, 2015
I prepared the City of Guelph's Site Plan Control manual; a publicly-accessible manual to inform Guelph residents, developers and landowners about the site plan control process. City of Guelph Site Plan User Guide.

Researcher and Writer: Getting Growth on Track
Client: Ryerson City Building Institute, 2015
The Ryerson City Building Institute convened experts to find policy solutions, tools, and approaches to strengthen the links between transit investments and planning. I interviewed participants and analyzed the results of their working session into a Ryerson City Building Report: Getting Growth on Track.

Case Studies: Light Rail Projects
Client: Metrolinx, 2015
As a sub-consultant to planningAlliance, I researched and wrote the case study chapter (3.0 Lessons Learned) exploring community benefits associated with light rail transit projects in six North American cities. Final Report: Sheppard (PDF), Final Report: Finch (PDF).