Steven Zakem

Partner* Admitted to the Ontario Bar: 1991

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*Practising as a professional corporation
  • Bio
  • Awards & Recognition
  • Professional Involvement
  • Education

Steven Zakem is widely recognized as an expert in municipal planning. He uses his deep understanding of the real estate market and strong interpersonal skills to guide clients through complex municipal regulations and multiple layers of city officials, staff and politicians.

Steven is a member of the firm's Municipal & Land Use Planning Group. His municipal practice is primarily devoted to land use planning matters involving residential, commercial and industrial properties. He advises a broad range of private and public sector clients on practical solutions that are suited to their tolerance for risk and appetite for opportunity. Steven has appeared before local municipal planning bodies and has extensive experience appearing before the Ontario Land Tribunal (formerly the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal).

Steven served on the firm's Executive Committee since 2011, and was Managing Partner from 2015 to 2024.

Awards & Recognition

  • Recognized in Chambers Canada as an Eminent Practitioner in Real Estate: Zoning/Land Use (Ontario)
  • Appears in The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory as a leading practitioner in the area of Property Development
  • Selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in Canada in Municipal Law and Real Estate Law
  • Named Best Lawyers' 2019 “Lawyer of the Year” in Municipal Law (Toronto) and 2013 "Lawyer of the Year" in Real Estate Law (Toronto)
  • Received the BV Distinguished rating from Martindale-Hubbell

Professional Involvement

Professional Activities

  •  Board Member, Toronto Lands Corporation (2014-2021)


  • Canadian/Ontario Bar Association (Municipal Law Section, Past Chair 2003-2004)
  • Lambda Alpha International Simcoe (Toronto) Chapter
  • Thomas More Lawyers' Guild of Toronto

Teaching Engagements

  • Past sessional lecturer of a Land Use Planning Law Course at Queen's University Law School (1999-2001)


  • LLB, Queen's University, 1989
  • BBA, University of Prince Edward Island, 1986