The City of Toronto will soon bid farewell to its Chief Planner. Gregg Lintern — who has spent 40 years as a public servant, including six years as Chief Planner for Toronto — will be retiring from his post at city hall on December 29.
This means that the City will soon be on the hunt for Lintern’s replacement. A successor has not yet been publicly named.
News of Lintern’s impending exit broke on Monday afternoon and is already being met with well wishes from various public figures.
Mayor Olivia Chow congratulated Lintern in a tweet earlier today, crediting him for “overseeing consequential changes to planning policies [and] leading projects” that have “transformed” Toronto.
I want to congratulate @gregglintern on his retirement as Chief Planner.
For 40 years, Gregg has served Torontonians by overseeing consequential changes to planning policies & leading projects that transformed our city. His vision and passion will be missed. Thank you Gregg.
— Mayor Olivia Chow (@MayorOliviaChow) November 13, 2023
Councillor Brad Bradford (Beaches-East York) also took to Twitter to call Lintern “one of the most transformative Chief Planners the city has ever seen, in both outcomes and approach,” as well as an “empathetic leader in the public service.”
Lintern took to his own social media shortly after the news broke, saying that he is proud of the work of the City Planning Division.
“Our team has had the hard conversations and continues to come up with solutions that offer more housing [and] employment choice for more people in more places — the cornerstone of a more inclusive, more climate-adapted city,” Lintern wrote.
“The more examples we can build — whether it’s transit to more places, new forms of innovative housing, more [and] different public spaces, and more services we can bring in different ways than the past through our lived [and] shared experience — the more comfortable we will all feel about change, the more we will celebrate each others’ renewal, and the more we will grow opportunity across the entire city for everyone.”
More than anything, I am proud of our @CityPlanTO team who are often at the very centre of change in this city - talking with Torontonians and future residents about our communities and how to make things better. No problem was ever solved running away from it 1/4 pic.twitter.com/wOffUVTV6Z
— Gregg Lintern (@GreggLintern) November 13, 2023
Lintern came to the City of Toronto after serving four years in Etobicoke’s City Planning division. He succeeded Jennifer Keesmaat, who served as Toronto’s Chief Planner between 2012 and 2017.
Amid the contentious backdrop of the housing crisis, it’s safe to say that Lintern’s will not be easy shoes to fill.