What are Urban and Land Use Planners?
Urban and land use planners design and develop plans, and recommend policies for managing the utilization of land, physical facilities and associated services for urban and rural areas and communities. They are employed by all levels of government, land developers, engineering and other consulting companies or may work as private consultants.
As a result, the following dutues may be performed by Urban and Land Use Planners:
- Compile and analyse data on demographic, economic, legal, political, cultural, sociological, physical and other factors affecting land use;
- Confer with municipal, provincial and federal authorities, civic leaders, social scientists, lawyers, land developers, the public and special interest groups to formulate and develop land use or community plans;
- Prepare and recommend land development concepts and plans for zoning, subdivisions, transportation, public utilities, community facilities, parks, agricultural and other land uses;
- Prepare plans for environmental protection, such as wildlife preserves, national and provincial parks, and protection of watersheds;
- Present plans to civic, rural and regional authorities and hold public meetings to present plans, proposals or planning studies to the general public and special interest groups;
- Review and evaluate proposals for land use and development plans and prepare recommendations;
- Process applications for land development permits and administer land use plans and zoning by-laws;
- Formulate long-range objectives and policies relative to future land use and the protection of the environment;
- Supervise and co-ordinate work of urban planning technicians and technologists.
Employment prospects over the next five years are listed as "average", with growth forecasted to be as fast as the average for all occupations. Two out of every three urban and land use planners work in the public sector. However, there has been some mobility from the public sector to private firms in the development industry. Increasingly, urban planners work with computerized mapping systems, which require continuous skill upgrading.