Senior Facilities Planner

University of British Columbia

Posted: 8/31/20
Deadline: 9/17/20
Reference Number: Job Opening ID: 38183

About This Organization

University of British Columbia, Okanagan Campus

Consistently ranked one of BC’s Top Employers, UBC has also been ranked as one of Canada’s Greenest Employers for the sixth consecutive year. Within this context Infrastructure Development is a committed group of staff, architects, urban planners, engineers, public consultation professionals and sustainability experts dedicated to creating a vibrant, sustainable, live-work-learn community at UBC Okanagan.

UBC Okanagan campus is located in the province’s beautiful Okanagan Valley, home to exceptional recreation opportunities and dozens of award winning wineries. The Okanagan Valley is regarded as one of the most scenic regions in Canada with four distinct seasons, stunning landscapes and boundless opportunities for outdoor recreation – water sports, cycling, golfing, skiing, hiking and much more. Rich in culture, the Okanagan hosts brilliant wine festivals, extraordinary art, music, and theater events. UBC’s Okanagan campus invites you to live in one of Canada’s most desirable communities and work at one of the world’s top universities.

Job Duties

Job Summary

The Senior Facilities Planner (‘Planner’) manages and leads staff and consultants, and coordinates funds and time required for the planning and programming of the University’s academic and support facilities for the entire UBC Okanagan Campus.

This position leads the planning and programming of facilities for instruction, research, faculty and staff offices, informal learning and works closely with senior academic and administrative leadership and other functions including Campus Planning, Campus Operations and Risk Management, Finance Operations and Strategies, Provost and Vice President Academic, Research and Innovation Office, Faculties and the Centre for Teaching & Learning.

The Planner translates user requirements into functional and master programs and develops frameworks and processes to support the ongoing allocation, assessment, distribution and redistribution of space within the campus. Ensures that facilities and the use of space comply with faculty needs and provincial space standards.

Organizational Status

Reporting directly to the Director, Infrastructure Development, the Planner liaises with users and other campus departments. Additional responsibilities include ongoing management and guidance of the facilities planning process to capture and develop solutions for the ongoing space requirements of the institution. This includes interaction and communications with internal organizations such as the UBC Okanagan Space Management Committee, Provost and Vice President Academic, Research and Innovation Office, faculties, administrative departments and external organizations. A significant part of the Planner’s work involves interacting, liaising and negotiating with the campus community and recommending facilities and space allocation alternatives and solutions.

Work Performed

The nature of facilities planning requires that numerous resource people, including faculty and staff, consult with the Planner. As planning projects vary in time commitment and complexity, the number of such people will vary. In addition to the ongoing management of the facilities planning team, the Planner may consult, and coordinate less than 10 people on a small project while a large multi-million dollar capital project may engage 30 or more people.
• The Planner may be assigned 4-7 active capital projects and be responsible for 60-70 contacts
• The Planner is responsible for the management of major and minor capital planning initiatives from inception to completion of the pre-design phase.
• The Planner may direct programming and facilities’ consultants or undertake work directly.
• The Planner advises and participates in project working and/or steering committees on significant capital projects. Work includes, but is not limited to, the following:
1. Master Planning for Facilities
• Leads the creative problem solving and facilities planning that optimizes and intensifies the changing use and types of spaces in response to evolving needs of multiple users;
• Is a key contributor and resource to the university’s senior academic, administrative, and research leadership and coordinator of multi-year facility planning strategies;
• Responsible for the development of frameworks and processes to support the ongoing process of space allocation and management as well as facilities re-purposing and renovations for the entire UBC Okanagan Campus;
• Creates master and functional programs defining the areas required and how facilities are used including function, equipment and technology. Programs are based on changing user needs, department and faculty expansions, and Campus Masterplan undertakings;
• Develops planning specifications, functional plans and test fits in response to requests from various campus clients;
• Develops conceptual and schematic plans for various faculties, departments and administrative groups in response to requests from departments;
• Manages consultants in the development, review and approval of planning documents;
• Formulates, recommends and negotiates swing space options for campus users affected by major renovations or new construction.

2. Facilitation and Collaboration
• Convenes, chairs and/or participates in user group meetings;
• Facilitates meetings with senior administration and faculty representatives (e.g. Deans, Associate Deans and administrative staff) to better understand needs and space requests and to explore potential solutions;
• Collaborates closely with key managers from the Infrastructure Development (UBC Okanagan) Campus Planning (UBC Okanagan), Campus Operations and Risk Management (UBC Okanagan), and various other university departments including some in Vancouver such as Infrastructure Development (UBC Vancouver);
• Brings recommendations to the UBC Okanagan Space Management Committee, other committees as appropriate and user groups regarding space utilization;
• Responsible for achieving solutions through negotiations, compromises and creates agreements which are in the best interest of the project and the university;
• Formulates and recommends move options for campus users affected by major space renovations or new space construction;
• Prepares documentation, analysis and recommendations for UBC Senior Executive for decisions with respect to major capital projects and capital plans;
• Represents the UBC facilities and space planning function in meetings of appropriate University committees and discussion of facilities-related issues with the City of Kelowna, Development and Advancement, the UBC Okanagan Student Association, Student Clubs or Community groups;
• Key contributor to the preparation of business cases for submission to Ministry of Advanced Education, donors and other external granting agencies for approval of capital funding;
• Leads the selection of specialist participation and assists resource people, users and other departments in developing detailed requirements and reviews construction projects to ensure conformance with plans; and
• Key contributor in meetings of appropriate University committees for presentation and discussion of facilities programs and feasibility studies.

3. Project Planning
• Plans department, faculty and administration group renovations and expansions in cooperation with Project Services and UBC Properties Trust;
• Directs planning feasibility studies for conceptual projects in pre-planning stage, to review feasibility prior to proceeding through full planning and development process;
• Determines the best resources to use and when and how to use them in for facilities planning. This may encompass the use of specialist facilities programming services, architects, quantity surveyors, laboratory design or animal facility specialists;
• Engages other UBC departments during the planning process (e.g. Campus Planning, Campus Operations and Risk Management, Campus Security, IT Services etc.);
• Leads or supports CFI and other project planning studies in cooperation with Research Services and other supporting departments, including preparation of preliminary scope, estimates and enlisting feasibility consultants as necessary for complex grant requests;
• Defines terms of reference, develops Requests for Proposal and selects planning consultants if required;
• Manages consultants in the development, review and approval of planning documents; and
• Coordinates and monitors the activities of on-campus and off-campus resource people during the project planning process.

4. Monitoring and Assessment
• Audits departmental space use, inventories equipment and furnishings through ongoing site visits and electronic data gathering methods;
• Oversees the accurate and up to date project records;
• Acts as lead resource and advisor by developing and managing the agenda and leading discussions at the UBC Okanagan Space Management Committee in developing and applying space allocation standards, providing institutional planning experience, knowledge of building codes and construction practices in order to test assumptions for planning work with various groups on campus.
• Establishes active working relationships with other university functions that affect space and its use including the Associate Registrar’s Office, Campus Operations, Center for Teaching and Learning, Information Technology, Provost office, Research office, Student Housing and Hospitality Services etc.
• Performs other related duties as required.

Supervision Received

Subject to general direction from the Director, Infrastructure Development, the Senior Facilities Planner is responsible within Department and University guidelines to determine what actions must be taken to achieve the ultimate project goal of meeting User and University requirements on schedule and on budget.
There is also an informal link with UBCO Senior Academic Leadership.

Supervision Given

The Senior Facilities Planner is responsible for managing all of the activities and providing oversight for all the projects and initiatives of a growing team of Facilities Planning Staff. This position provides leadership, oversight, guidance, training and expertise to the team and is responsible for the hiring, orientation and training of all new staff.

The Planning is also responsible for managing all resource people involved in the pre-design phase of a capital project, including support staff, professionals, consultants and contractors and provides technical guidance for the completion of specific assignments. A typical breakdown of these resource people is as follows:
• Project Planning Committee – with the Planner as Co-Chair
• Programming Consultant (if required) including staff
• Off-Campus Resources – special consultants, government departments, Quantity Surveyor etc.

Consequence of Error/Judgement

At any given time, the Senior Facilities Planner may be involved in several projects with a value exceeding 50 million dollars. Error in judgement and planning of projects can have serious financial impact not only on the department that the work is being completed for, but for the University as a whole. Errors in the planning can result in delayed occupancy and result in faculty unable to teach/carry out research as required. Error in application of programming standards can result in misuse of space, departments being unnecessarily inconvenienced or under/over supplied or undermining of the University academic space planning process. Government funding for projects relies on proof of responsible and accurate space dedication, compliance with BC Universities’ Space Standards and meeting the University’s enrollment targets. The loss of funding to the University is an additional potential consequence of any such error. Other potential consequences include damage to the reputation of the university and loss of economic and academic opportunity.

Required Qualifications

Undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline. Eligibility for membership in a professional Institute or Association. University degree in a specialization including Architecture, Engineering, Community Planning required.

Eligible for membership in the appropriate provincial professional association and is therefore qualified for professional registration as an Architect (Architectural Institute of British Columbia) or Engineer (Association of Professional Engineers of BC).

A minimum of 8 years of experience in related architectural and planning experience including experience with major construction or renovation projects or the equivalent combination of education and experience.

Experience in institutional planning at major academic centres.

Keeps up-to-date on facilities planning theory and best practices and is dedicated to continuous learning. This is accomplished through affiliation with various professional associations (Society for College and University Planners etc.), use of professional journals, attendance at professional seminars and conferences, and continual communication with professional programmers, architects and engineers involved in University and other capital projects.

Experience in preparing and presenting information to senior management to assist them with making decisions.

Experience in functional programming for administrative and support units providing service such as food outlets, bookstores, parking, and security.

Experience gathering and assessing needs and applying creative planning skills to resolve space issues for both office and laboratory space.

Consistently demonstrates a very high capability to be adaptable and flexible in catering to diverse and changing needs and perspectives of users.

Demonstrated organizational and leadership skills.

Strong interpersonal and oral and written communication skills with demonstrated good listening skills and ability to reconcile and synthesize diverse perspectives for mutual benefit.

Effective negotiating, bargaining, compromising, and conciliation skills.

Previous construction experience or in depth knowledge of construction practices is essential. Experience using planning programs such as Span Archibus. Knowledge of building codes.

Relevant technical skills including hand drafting, graphics; proficiency in AutoCad. Advanced level computer skills in a PC environment.

Ability to summarize needs, determine priorities, multi-task and exercise mature judgement. Ability to develop creative solutions and apply space utilization standards to unique user requirements.

Equity and diversity are essential to academic excellence. An open and diverse community fosters the inclusion of voices that have been underrepresented or discouraged. We encourage applications from members of groups that have been marginalized on any grounds enumerated under the B.C. Human Rights Code, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, racialization, disability, political belief, religion, marital or family status, age, and/or status as a First Nation, Metis, Inuit, or Indigenous person.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

Other Info

For more information and to submit resume please visit our website: