Ruchi Agarwal, principal planner at ikterra
Ruchi Agarwal (she/her)

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Ruchi Agarwal is the owners and principal planner at ikterra. She has lived and worked in four countries and has over eight years of experience in urban planning, project management, and team leadership. She is currently based in Toronto and offers remote and in-person consulting services to clients in Canada and abroad (as public health, travel, and visa rules permit).

Ms. Agarwal has worked on a wide spectrum of projects across several locations and with award-winning individuals and firms. In the US, she supervised large-scale onboard transit passenger surveys in North Carolina and New York; as well as created an innovative “living” Comprehensive Plan for the Village of Johnstown, Ohio. She also worked on developing Ohio’s Long-Range Transportation Plan 2045. In Canada, she helped prepare equity-based Placemaking studies and organize public consultations for the City of Toronto’s Digital Infrastructure Plan. In India, she has published articles, created a resourceful app to support the City of Bengaluru during the Pandemic, delivered training sessions, and been involved in various social initiatives. When not working she likes to read, dance, travel, and sometimes cook but mostly eat new cuisines.

Engineer turned planner, Ms. Agarwal holds a Master of City and Regional Planning Degree from The Ohio State University and a Bachelor of Engineering degree from Visvesvaraya Technological University.

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Ms. Agarwal’s planning career began after graduating from the Ohio State University. She has since then supported both private and public sector clients for urban and rural communities in Canada, in the USA, and in India. Ms. Agarwal has contributed to developing comprehensive land-use plans, multimodal transportation plans and studies, community development plans and strategies as well as hazard mitigation plans, through the means of focused research, GIS mapping and analysis, soliciting and assessing community feedback, and written and verbal reporting.

Ms. Agarwal has assisted in the management of onboard transit passenger surveys for the Westchester Bee-Line and four bus systems in Raleigh-Durham Research Triangle. She ensured successful project completion through training and supervision of staff, managing complete survey logistics, shift scheduling, facilitating communications, resolving unforeseen issues, data analysis and report writing.

She has developed a “living” Comprehensive Plan for the Village of Johnstown, Ohio. This online and interactive Comprehensive Plan provided the means to visualize the current progress of each action towards its measurable target, as well as ongoing community engagement opportunities. She also defined the plan’s goals, strategies, and action items and prepared the final draft of the Plan using GIS and Adobe tools.

Ms. Agarwal is a confident public speaker and especially proficient in community engagement. She has organized and facilitated several virtual and in-person community engagement events, analyzed feedback, written thorough summary reports, and made public presentations. Notably, she was involved in the public consultations for the City of Toronto’s Digital Infrastructure Plan, Orange Township Comprehensive Plan, and Dayton Redevelopment Visioning.

Ms. Agarwal writes articles on urban issues and manages an Instagram blog focused on the intersection of travel and urban planning. Last but not least, she is entrepreneurial, hence ikterra, and is actively creating new and innovative ways of enhancing community engagement and development. Her current projects include converting lengthy articles into descriptive videos for increased public outreach and the development of an educational graphic novel to promote youth awareness of civic issues.

She is currently based in Toronto and offers remote and in-person consulting services to clients in Canada and abroad.

Ms. Agarwal holds a Master of City and Regional Planning Degree with a focus on Community Engagement and Sustainability from The Ohio State University, and a Bachelor of Electrical and Electronics Engineering degree from Visvesvaraya Technological University. She is trained on air quality and bike facility design by the National Highway Institute (USA), and ‘Unpacking Urbanism’ and ‘Assessing Vulnerabilities’ course by Indian Institute of Human Settlements. She is also formally trained in PMI-developed project management standards and Social Entrepreneurship.