Office of Deputy City Manager, Planning and Growth Management

Haiqing Xu joined the City of Vaughan in May 2021. Before becoming Deputy City Manager of Planning and Growth Management, he was director of Development Services with the Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville, manager of Policy and Sustainability with the Town of Caledon, and manager of Long-Range Planning with the Regional Municipality of Halton.

Mr. Xu graduated from the University of Sheffield, England, with a PhD in town and regional planning. He was assistant professor at Concordia University in Montreal, and is currently adjunct professor at Ryerson University’s Geography and Environmental Studies Department and an associate faculty in the university’s Yeates School of Graduate Studies. 

The Planning and Growth Management team is comprised of a number of departments, each playing an important role in the city’s development process. Departments include Policy Planning and Environmental Sustainability, Development Planning, Building Standards, Development Engineering and the Vaughan Metropolitan Centre Program.


Message to the Community


My role as Deputy City Manager, Planning and Growth Management, is to uphold effective service delivery from the City’s planning, development engineering and building standards departments for sustainable city-building. It is my goal to support and implement the 2022-2026 Term of Council Service Excellence Strategic Plan to provide Service Excellence to all members of our community.


Vaughan is currently experiencing unprecedented growth and development. Thoughtful, forward-thinking planning is required to ensure Vaughan continues to be a safe, healthy, sustainable and vibrant place. The Planning and Growth Management team is committed to safeguarding city planning based on citizen input, thorough studies, Council directions and Provincial regulations and legislations.


We are here to serve you!


Haiqing Xu

Deputy City Manager, Planning and Growth Management

Below is a list of services and departments under the Deputy City Manager, Planning and Growth Management:


  • Building Standards ensures the safe and lawful use of land and buildings through the administration of the Building Code Act. The department also enforces the Ontario Building Code regulations (including health and safety standards) and the requirements of the City’s Zoning By-law. Building Standards issues building permits and conducts building inspections while overseeing Zoning By-law processes, sign permits and minor variances.
  • Development Engineering facilitates and supports the City’s growth, through timely engineering review, and the approval of development applications and engineering submissions related to the construction of new municipal services such as roads, sewers and watermains. It also reviews and approves construction plans, and undertakes inspections for all development projects throughout the city.
  • Development Planning manages city-building through the implementation of the provincial policy, a Regional and City Official Plan policy as well as the strategic priorities contained in the 2022-2026 Term of Council Service Excellence Strategic Plan and the City’s Growth Management Strategy. This is achieved through the comprehensive analysis of development planning, heritage and Committee of Adjustment applications submitted by private landowners and through the preparation and implementation of urban design guidelines, streetscape implementation, financial strategy plans and management of capital projects. The department provides a public service function by facilitating input from the public, agencies, other levels of government and stakeholders into the development approval process and being a source for land development information. The department’s Geographic Information System (GIS) team creates, maintains and undertakes analysis of digital data and creates complex digital mapping and solutions.
  • Policy Planning and Environmental Sustainability serves the city by guiding growth and development through the City of Vaughan’s Official Plan, and the Community Sustainability and Environmental Master Plan: Green Directions Vaughan. They provide Hon. Mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua and Members of Council with the policy framework to guide the creation of a strong, healthy, sustainable, resilient and prosperous city. The team develops actionable policies and plans based on best practices, fulfilling all relevant legislative requirements. The department conducts public consultation and collaborates with stakeholders and partners to promote a “sustainability first” approach to achieve shared goals, including action on climate change initiatives.
  • The Vaughan Metropolitan Centre (VMC) Program is a collection of development projects and strategic initiatives that implement the policy and vision of the Vaughan Metropolitan Centre Secondary Plan, which will shape the form, identity and experience of Vaughan’s emerging downtown. This program includes the co-ordination, management and implementation of planning, urban design and engineering studies and infrastructure, public realm design and construction projects. The team performs comprehensive reviews and analysis of complex development applications and the execution of strategic marketing, engagement and activation initiatives.



Haiqing Xu
Deputy City Manager, Planning and Growth Management


905-832-2281, ext. 8445


Executive Assistant:

Stephanie Ferreira

905-832-2281, ext. 8111


Vaughan City Hall, Level 200

2141 Major Mackenzie Dr.

Vaughan, ON L6A 1T1