Karla Avis-Birch

Chief Planning Officer at Metrolinx

As Chief Planning Officer, Karla extends her tenure at Metrolinx and builds on her executive leadership and award-winning, multi-billion-dollar project delivery experience.

Throughout her career, Karla has overseen the construction and completion of countless instrumental infrastructural pieces and has accelerated the delivery of service. In her previous role as Vice President, GO Stations Capital Delivery, she established Metrolinx’s first Project Controls & Design Standards Office, partnered with Infrastructure Ontario on the procurement of P3 projects, and was accountable for the delivery of transformational GO Expansion programs.

Karla is a Civil Engineering graduate from Ryerson University. Karla’s proven record of excellence garnered her a feature in the Women of Influence “Meet and Role Model” article and a spot amongst the 2020 Women in Infrastructure Network (WIN) Outstanding Leaders short list. She also served as the 2017 and 2018 President of the Women in Transportation Seminars (WTS) Toronto Area Chapter. She has been federally appointed by Infrastructure Canada to serve on the Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority (WDBA) Board of Directors to oversee the construction of the Gordie Howe bridge.

As Chief Planning Officer, Karla will guide the planning and benefits of the regional transportation network and support practical advancement of the Regional Transportation Plan and evidence-based decision making in the delivery of transit projects. She is deeply passionate about forging end-to-end transit solutions from vision to reality, region-wide, tomorrow, and for decades to come.



  • Chief Planning Officer

    December, 2020 - present

View in org chart