New Director of City Building appointed - think planner.

News 100 blueBy Staff

May 28th, 2018



Heather MacDonald is going to be the new Director of City Building effective June 25, 2018. In the past the position was known as the Director of Planning

Heather_MacDonald COB planner

Heather MacDonald appointed the Director of City Building.

MacDonald is currently the acting Vice President, Project Planning in Planning and Development at Metrolinx.

Previously, MacDonald has worked at the City of Brampton where she was Interim Commissioner, Planning and Development Services and at the City of Mississauga where she held series of progressive roles in human resources and planning, including Director, Policy Planning; Director, Organizational Wellness; and Director, Strategic Housing Initiatives.

MacDonald is a Registered Professional Planner and Certified Human Resources Leader. She holds a Bachelor of Environmental Studies from the University of Waterloo and is a graduate of the Executive Program at Queen’s University and the Advanced Human Resources Studies program at the University of Toronto.

Bill Janssen, Burlington’s current acting Director of City Building will remain in the role until June 22, 2018.

City manager James Ridge is fleshing out his leadership team. The former Director of Planning, Mary Lou Tanner was made the Deputy City Manager. Ridge reports that: “After a comprehensive recruiting competition, the city is pleased to have Heather MacDonald who will serve as the new Director of City Building. Heather is “an accomplished veteran in the public sector with broad expertise in the municipal environment. As Burlington’s population continues to grow, Heather’s leadership skills and municipal knowledge will play a valuable role in guiding the city’s long-term planning vision, as set out by the new Official Plan.”

Bill Janssen gets thanked for “his guidance in leading the Department of City Building over the last six months, including the adoption of Burlington’s new Official Plan.”

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2 comments to New Director of City Building appointed – think planner.

  • Penny

    Why would the City decide to have Heather MacDonald’s title go from Director of Planning to Director of Building? Does it mean that there is a building and a planning department. If yes, who is in charge of the planning department? Does it signal another level of bureaucracy ?

  • William

    I’ve heard many residents say they’re not happy with city hall turning Burlington into a bland, overbuilt Mississauga. Will the new director of planning continue to impose the generic big-city mindset that’s rooted in her Brampton//Mississauga experience (as Ridge is bringing his North Vancouver orientation); or can she listen and understand the Burlington culture and ethos.

    I’m not optimistic if Tanner and Ridge are in charge of the hiring decisions.