City Hires a New Chief Planner to Carry Out Heavy Agenda

The Chief Planner is a pretty big hole to fill in the roster of City Hall senior staff, especially when there’s so much planning to do, even in the midst of a global pandemic. Well, that important position is no longer vacant as the City of Guelph announced Friday that they’ve filled the substantial shoes of the City’s now retired Chief Planner.

Starting Monday, Krista Walkey will begin her new role as general manager of Planning and Building Services.

“We’re very pleased to welcome Krista to the City,” said deputy chief administrative officer of Infrastructure, Development and Enterprise Services Kealy Dedman in a statement. “Krista’s leadership and depth of experience will help Guelph in the short-term as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, and over the long-term as we continue our work on our growth management strategy and official plan update.”

Like her predecessor, Walkey comes to the City of Guelph now with 20 years of planning experience in both the private and public sectors. She’s worked at the City of Waterloo, Stantec Consulting Ltd., and she was most recently the manager of development services at the City of Brampton. Walkey succeeds Todd Salter as general manager of Planning and Building Services and Chief Planner, who spend eight years in that position before retiring last month after 30 years in municipal planning.

“I’m delighted to be joining Guelph’s amazing team of planning and building professionals,” said Walkey in a statement. “I look forward to continuing the positive progress Guelph is making around it’s development planning and building oversight.”

The work that awaits Walkey is vast with updates of the Transportation Master Plan, the Parks and Recreation Master Plan, and the update to the growth management plan all currently in progress. There’s also the Clair-Maltby Secondary Plan to contend with as well as the sale of the Guelph Innovation District lands, and the altered capital planning schedule as a result of COVID-19.

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