Meridian Urban provides industry leading advisory and program management services in the areas of urban policy & planning, and resilience & adaptation.

The social, environmental and economic challenges affecting our settlements, and the way in which we manage them, are becoming increasingly complex. This requires a new way of thinking about how planners and city managers do their business.

Meridian Urban’s core capabilities lie in strategic planning, policy development, and statutory planning. We deliver these services for governance reviews, urban policy changes, and planning instruments. We are recognised as thought leaders in our fields and are renowned for developing creative solutions to complex problems, and providing timely, accurate and technically rich services to our clients and the communities they serve.

The work and experience of the Meridian Urban team in the field of natural hazard resilience & adaptation is currently driving change across Australia. In particular, we translate resilience and adaptation initiatives into state-wide, community-scale and site-specific planning contexts.

We also have practical experience in governance, administration and communication during and following disaster events which provides unique insight to the application of disaster resilience policy and strategy to on-the-ground practice.

Our Expertise


  • Policy formulation
  • Land use strategies
  • Strategic plans
  • Spatial plans
  • Statutory planning
  • Governance frameworks
  • Governance capacity & capability reviews
  • Community engagement


  • Natural hazard risk assessments and management plans
  • Community resilience strategies
  • Risk based land use planning
  • Climate change adaptation strategies and plans
  • Disaster management and recovery programs and plans
  • Project leadership and collaboration

Our Services


We work in partnership with our clients and stakeholders to identify, analyse and delve into complex problems, to develop plans to improve the efficiency, effectiveness and resilience of organisations, governments and community systems. This often brings new ways of thinking, revealing outcomes that benefit all.


We provide targeted, robust advice and solutions to our clients in short term or on-going capacities utilising our industry leading experience in strategic land use planning, flood risk management, bushfire risk management, coastal hazard adaptation, earthquake recovery and disaster management.


We manage and deliver a full range of planning and resilience projects and programs on behalf of our clients including the management of all specialists, sub-consultants and relevant partners.


We bring together multidisciplinary teams to capture and drill down into data revealing new and exciting interrelationships that when understood can bring better outcomes for communities.

Our Team


Stephen Dredge

Director Stephen Dredge established Meridian Urban to offer a high-quality, high-value professional consulting service with a unique difference – one that combines his passions of strategic land use planning and settlement resilience.

Stephen brings almost 20 years of experience in Australia and overseas as an urban planner with a passion for helping people think differently and improving the way we plan.  He provides thought leadership and executive level direction to dealing with the modern-day challenges of planning systems reform, risk-based land use planning, resilience, climate adaptation, and statutory planning.


Laura Gannon

Laura Gannon is an Associate Director with almost 20 years of experience in strategic land use planning, bushfire risk and community resilience across both the public and private sectors. Laura specialises in management consulting approaches to the integration of natural hazard risk management into land use planning policy and strategy, with a particular emphasis on bushfire risk and resilience, floodplain risk management and climate adaptation. She has extensive experience in the areas of planning policy, strategic and statutory planning accumulated through a number of senior leadership positions.


Kim Kirstein

Kim Kirstein is a business Principal and governance and statutory planning specialist at Meridian Urban, with nearly 20 years of industry experience at the local, state and national government levels. Kim specialises in navigating and identifying opportunities to streamline government processes, including embedding resilience principles into statutory frameworks, policy and strategy. Kim’s extensive and detailed understanding of government systems is demonstrated through her leadership in providing cutting-edge statutory advice informing and influencing overarching frameworks in the delivery of sustainable development.


Julie Brook

Julie Brook is a local and regional planning specialist with over a decade of experience across the public and private sectors. Julie also holds an MBA, providing her with diverse business and project management skills for a holistic governance, policy and strategy outlook. Julie is experienced in translating complex legislative frameworks, planning instrument and policy formation, land use strategies, risk-based planning and planning for resilient communities, in addition to significant development assessment experience. Her strong analytical skills compliment her specialist capabilities in judicial practices. Julie has been accepted as a Building Tribunal Referee, as an expert on senior industry panels, has briefed expert witnesses, and assisted counsel in various court matters.


Jane Jackson

Jane Jackson is a Senior Planner with over eight years’ experience in a range of fields including statutory planning, environmental planning, development assessment and project management in both public and private sectors. Jane is passionate about identifying problems and developing solutions to create efficiencies in planning systems. She is outcome focused and has a well-rounded understanding of planning frameworks across multiple jurisdictions.

Sam Evans

Sam Evans

Sam Evans is a Senior Planner with extensive experience working in government and private practice in various fields including land use and development, spatial analysis, policy review, policy development and infrastructure planning. Sam specialises in utilising spatial analysis to solve land use planning challenges. Sam has long-held interests in statutory frameworks and resilience and is passionate about improving planning systems to better respond to the threat of natural hazards. Sam bolsters his planning and resilience capabilities with qualifications in bushfire assessment from the University of Melbourne.


Fraser Ramsay

Fraser Ramsay is an urban planner with both Australian and international experience across practical and academic environments. With a dual masters degree in Science and Human Settlements from Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium and an undergraduate degree in Urban and Environmental Planning from Griffith University, Fraser has worked across a range of planning fields including strategic land use planning, development assessment, infrastructure coordination, community engagement, flood resilience planning and policy development. Fraser further strengthens and supports his planning and resilience capabilities with qualifications in bushfire assessment from the University of Melbourne.


Ryan McNeilly Smith

Ryan McNeilly Smith is a planner and urban designer with experience working in government and academic settings in a variety of fields, including urban design and placemaking, urban heat policy, strategic planning, policy review, community engagement, and human and social disaster recovery. Ryan has a special interest in urban design policy responses to urban heat and the heat-health risks of heatwaves and is undertaking a PhD to deepen his knowledge in this emerging field. Ryan holds an undergraduate in Urban Design and Town Planning (Honours Class I) and is passionate about responding to emerging climate and natural hazard risks.


Jessica Dumbell

Jessica Dumbell is a corporate services and resilience professional with over 16 years of professional experience across government and private sectors in Australia and abroad. As Acting Operations Manager she has an expansive knowledge across a broad range of corporate areas including finance, human resources, operations, and business systemisation. Jessica further supports this with professional experience in program and project management, having a proven ability to coordinate complex teams and initiatives. Jessica has a Double Bachelor’s Degree in Business (Management) and Psychology from Griffith University which supports her enduring interests in resilience and organisational psychology.


Heidi Dredge

Heidi Dredge has over 15 years of project and program management professional experience in Australia and abroad, managing a wide scope of large-scale projects and enterprises across sectors including planning, governance, and agriculture. Her wealth of knowledge spans all corporate service areas including communications, finance, human resources, operations and business administration. Heidi’s experience includes many project and operational start-ups, with a focus on hitting the ground running while laying thoughtful ground work for ongoing and future project and enterprise success.


Stephen Dredge
Ph. 0448 755 435