Meridian Partners

About Us

Nick McDonald, RPP

Nick McDonald, RPP is the President of Meridian Planning Consultants and has been a Planning Consultant since 1989. Much of Nick's work throughout his career has been for the public sector and he has prepared a number of official plans, secondary plans, strategic plans, zoning by-laws and land use studies for numerous municipalities. Nick has also been retained by landowners to manage complex development approval processes and by ratepayer groups who were looking to participate in planning processes.

Nick has often been called upon to lead complex projects and is well known for his public speaking skills and strategic thinking abilities. Nick is also an accomplished writer and has the ability to translate complex policies and regulations into something more understandable and relatable.

Nick has a keen interest in all types of geographies and has continuously thought of how they evolve and change sometimes almost on a daily basis. Nick was born in Montreal and spent much of his youth exploring every corner of that great city. He has been living in the Toronto area for the past 30 years and has travelled extensively throughout the Province as part of his practice and has come to truly enjoy and respect its incredible diversity. Nick has also travelled to many places throughout North America and Europe and has seen how different geographies have evolved over time.

In all places visited, Nick is always attempting to relate one place to another to see how things are done differently and to understand why. In the end, there is a reason for why every public space is the way it is, for why buildings look the way they do and why cities and regions are organized the way they are. He also has a photographic memory when it comes to geography and spatial relationships. Lastly, he understands the complexities of making changes happen. In this regard, it is never easy and it often requires the generation of big ideas and grand visions at the start that then get implemented incrementally over time.

Jessica Tijanic, RPP has been a Planner at Meridian Planning Consultants since 2015 and before then worked for the Town of Caledon and the Region of Halton. Jessica has a Master of Science (Planning) from the University of Guelph and has gained a breadth of policy and development experience working on a variety of projects including Official Plans, Secondary Plans and Zoning By-laws.

Most recently, she has been involved with the preparation of a new comprehensive zoning by-law for the City of Markham and another for the Town of Arnprior. For the Markham zoning by-law project, Jessica was responsible for reviewing Official Plan policies for established neighbourhoods, employment areas, mixed use areas and commercial areas to identify what standards should be included in the new by-law.

For 1 ½ years, Jessica was providing planning services to the Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville on a number of development applications. This has included processing a range of minor to major development proposals for applications such as zoning by-law amendments, official plan amendments, site plans and subdivision applications. As part of this role, she has been responsible for circulating materials to departments and agencies for comment; coordinating and analysing comments; conducting research; attending and conducting site visits, preparing reports and recommendations; attending and making presentations at Development Review Team meetings and to Council; and, preparing implementation documents. While at Whitchurch-Stouffville, she was well recognized by her peers for her diligence and professionalism.

Toula Theocharidis, RPP has been a Planner at Meridian Planning Consultants since 2018 and before then worked as a Development Planner for 2 years at the Region of Peel and then for 8 years at the City of Brampton.

As a Development Planner at the City of Brampton and at the Region of Peel, her work responsibilities consisted of project managing various complex development applications. In this regard, she has worked with municipal staff, agencies, consultants, developers and the public to work through various challenges and reach acceptable solutions on numerous development projects. In this role, she was also responsible for coordinating the review and circulation of plans to interdepartmental staff and external agencies, collecting and analyzing comments, making recommendations and preparing reports. She is knowledgeable in interpreting planning legislation, policy documents, plans and technical drawings.

Toula has been working on a number of development files on behalf of the Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville. She was responsible for preparing planning reports and recommendations on development applications to Council such as, draft plan of subdivisions, draft plan of condominiums, official plan and zoning by-law amendments. She was also project managing site plan applications for the Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville as well.