Toronto's top project finance lawyers in Toronto

Find out who Toronto’s top project finance lawyers are based on Lexpert’s extensive yearly peer survey. The full roster of Ontario’s most recommended lawyers and law firms in the field can be viewed on our practice area rankings.

In our survey, project finance involves the financing of infrastructure and industrial projects based on projected revenues rather than the general assets or creditworthiness of equity investors or sponsors. Project finance lawyers often deal with the negotiation and drafting of financing documents involving several private and government entities partnering on one deal.

Most frequently recommended project finance lawyers

Mark W.S. Bain

Law firm: Torys LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1989

Mark W.S. Bain is a partner at Torys LLP, where he heads the public-private partnerships (PPP) practice and co-heads the infrastructure and energy groups. He has acted on more than 80 major PPP and alternative financing and procurement (AFP) transactions and other infrastructure transactions in the healthcare, power, telecom, education, justice, gaming, water and wastewater, pipelines, public records and urban redevelopment sectors. Bain represents sponsors, equity investors, lenders, arrangers and underwriters, contractors, service providers and public authorities. His recent mandates include the Barrie Transit, Billy Bishop Airport Terminal, Downtown Toronto Bus Terminal, Eglinton Crosstown LRT, Indianapolis Consolidated Courts, Mackenzie Valley Fibre Link, Ottawa LRT, Regina Bypass, Regina Stadium, Regina Wastewater Treatment Plant, Saint John Drinking Water, Stanton Territorial Hospital, Vancouver SRO social housing, Waterloo LRT, Windsor Essex Parkway and Women’s College Hospital projects. Bain is also the chair of the Canadian Council for Public-Private Partnerships and the Canada chair of the International Project Finance Association.

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Gordon D. Baird

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP


Year called to Bar: 1991

Gordon D. Baird is a partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP’s financial services group in Toronto. He devotes his practice to lending and secured transactions, with an emphasis on lending to the power, financial services, and media and telecommunications sectors. Baird regularly acts for bank syndicates, non-bank lenders and borrowers on domestic, cross-border and international loan transactions. His recent transactions include acting for borrowers in multibillion-dollar liquidity facilities backstopping commercial paper programs and in respect of central clearing parties. He has also acted for investors on multiple bond offerings in connection with the development or financing of wind-power and hydroelectric generation facilities and for lenders on a $3-billion acquisition financing of a media company. Baird has acted for the providers of the margin funding facility in connection with the restructuring of the Canadian non-bank asset-backed commercial paper market and for Canadian borrower clients with significant foreign operations in the implementation and restructuring of their global credit facilities. He is also the chair of McCarthy Tétrault’s national pro bono committee.

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Robert T. Bauer

Law firm: Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1976

Robert T. Bauer serves as a senior partner at Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP. He also heads the firm’s commercial real estate and infrastructure practices. Bauer brings more than 40 years of expertise and industry knowledge to high-profile and business-critical commercial real estate development projects, infrastructure projects, PPPs, project financing and joint venture work in Canada, the U.S., Europe and Asia. He advises clients on transformative and landmark projects. Bauer is instrumental in the successful development of large projects in diverse sectors, ranging from hospitals to commercial casino projects to cross-border rail tunnels, toll roads and airport developments.

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Chris Bennett

Law firm: Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP


Year called to the Bar: 2001

Chris Bennett is a partner at Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP. He is also the national chair of the firm’s financial services group and leads its project finance team in Toronto. Bennett has extensive experience in acting for domestic and international lenders, developers and other participants on complex project financings in many Canadian jurisdictions. He has led major transactions in several industries, including social infrastructure, transportation and renewable energy. Bennett has spoken and written extensively on matters relating to project finance and public-private partnerships, including developing two courses on PPPs at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law, where he has been an adjunct faculty member since 2007.

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William Buchner

Law firm: Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP


Year called to the Bar: 2009

William Buchner is a partner at Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP’s infrastructure, energy, finance and corporate practices. He advises developers, investors, lenders and borrowers in Canada and the U.S. on large infrastructure and power project development and financing, with an emphasis on public-private partnership procurement. Buchner boasts extensive knowledge of the complexities of hydroelectric, wind and solar financing. He frequently advises on the sale and purchase of renewable energy and infrastructure projects across Canada. Buchner also has significant experience in negotiating a wide variety of related development contracts.

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Abraham (Bram) Costin

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1992

Abraham Costin serves as counsel at McCarthy Tétrault LLP’s real property and planning group in Toronto. His practice covers a full range of transactions, including leasing, acquisitions, development and financing. Costin acts for large and small developers, pension funds and financial institutions. His practice also includes insolvency and realization work related to real property. Costin is a fellow and member of the board of regents of the American College of Mortgage Attorneys. He is also a member of the advisory board of the Georgetown Law School Advanced Commercial Leasing Institute.

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John C. Currie

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1997

John C. Currie is a partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP, where he leads the firm’s real property and planning group. Currie has a commercial real estate practice that covers all aspects of real estate transactions, including single and multi-asset acquisitions and dispositions, large and mid-scale secured financing, securitizations, asset management and development agreements, joint ventures, operating contracts, and leasing and licensing. His recent transactions include acting for lenders in the mid- and large-scale construction and permanent financings of condominium, energy, office, entertainment and gaming facilities, green energy, hydroelectric and timberland operations and multi-asset mezzanine lending.

Catherine Doyle

Law firm: Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP


Year called to the Bar: 2006

Catherine Doyle is a partner at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP. She practises in the areas of project finance, infrastructure, public-private partnerships and structured finance law. Doyle regularly advises on infrastructure projects, including in the transportation, social infrastructure, alternative energy, power and health-care sectors. She has represented financial institutions in the financing of infrastructure assets, including bond underwriters, institutional investors, and Canadian and international banks. Doyle has extensive experience in operating and term credit facilities, asset-based financings, lease financings and structured financial products, and in structuring, negotiating and documenting domestic and cross-border financing transactions in the bank, private placement and bond markets. Her closed projects include the MacDonald Block reconstruction, Royal Inland Hospital, New Toronto Courthouse, Enterprise Data Centre Borden expansion, Stanton Territorial Hospital, Saskatchewan Hospital North Battleford, the Saskatchewan joint-use schools projects, Haile Gold Mine, John Hart Generating Station replacement, the Fort St. James Green Energy project, Bow Lake Wind Farm, Northeast Anthony Henday Drive, the Union Pearson Express and New Oakville Hospital.

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Stephen Furlan

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1994

Stephen Furlan is a partner at the national business law practice group leader at McCarthy Tétrault LLP. He devotes his practice to project finance, particularly energy projects and public-private partnerships. Furlan regularly advises domestic and non-domestic banks and financial institutions in the structuring and negotiation of project finance transactions, including some of the largest syndicated corporate credits in Canada. He has acted for both lenders and borrowers on project financing (energy), PPP infrastructure financings, mezzanine financing and loan workouts. Furlan also has extensive experience in lending to Aboriginal communities.

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Brian C. Kelsall

Law firm: Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1982 (ON); 1985 (AB); 2005 (England & Wales)

Brian C. Kelsall is a partner at Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP. He specializes in corporate project finance, with an emphasis on domestic and international public-private partnerships and infrastructure development. He advises lenders, sponsors and investors in Canadian and overseas projects in the infrastructure, energy, telecom, oil and gas, mining and power sectors. Kelsall also has extensive experience in banking law, securitization and mergers and acquisitions. He advises participants in domestic projects in the infrastructure, mining, energy, power and real estate sectors. His recent transactions include advising the lenders on Infrastructure Ontario’s Eglinton Crosslinx PPP project, the winning consortium on the U.S. Pennsylvania Bridges project and the federal government on its Communications Security Establishment Canada Long Term Accommodation Project.

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Scott Kraag

Law firm: Torys LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1998 (BC); 1998 (ON); 2002 (England & Wales)

Scott Kraag is a partner at Torys LLP. He is also the head of the firm’s project finance practice and co-head of the banking and debt finance practice. Kraag specializes in corporate project finance, with an emphasis on infrastructure (public-private partnerships), energy and mining. He has represented the principal parties on a variety of project finance transactions, including lenders, sponsors, equity investors, arrangers and underwriters, contractors, service providers and public authorities. Kraag also has extensive experience in banking law. He regularly advises lenders and borrowers in complex international and domestic debt financing transactions. Kraag is an adjunct professor at Osgoode Hall Law School, where he teaches commercial law.

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David A.N. Lever

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1987

David A.N. Lever is a partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP, where he serves as chair of the board of partners and leader of the projects and infrastructure groups. Lever devotes his practice to project development, project finance, corporate finance and mergers and acquisitions in the energy and infrastructure sectors. He boasts extensive experience in financings in both the public and private markets and in public-private partnership arrangements and long-term contracts with governments. Lever represents developers, investors and lenders in connection with hydro, co-generation, biomass, landfill gas, nuclear and wind power projects across Canada and the U.S. He also provides advice with respect to market design and energy procurement.

Carol D. Pennycook

Law firm: Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1981 (AB); 1985 (ON)

Carol D. Pennycook is a partner at Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP. She advises on a wide range of transactions, including syndicated loans, corporate finance, structured finance, project finance, debt capital market offerings, private equity, private mergers and acquisitions, corporate reorganizations and derivative products. A significant portion of her practice is devoted to financing transactions, acting for both borrowers and lenders. Pennycook also acts on renewable energy transactions, joint ventures, corporate and acquisition credit facilities and capital markets bond, debenture and note offerings, both Canadian and cross-border. She acts in many of the highest-profile public-private partnership projects in Canada and the U.S. and has achieved great success for borrower and lender clients in complex infrastructure financings. Pennycook is a former director of PPP Canada.

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Nicholas C. Williams

Law firm: Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1989

Nicholas C. Williams is a partner at Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP. He specializes in finance, private mergers and acquisitions and energy law, with an emphasis on project finance, public-private partnerships, infrastructure and energy development and acquisitions and secured lending. Williams has participated in numerous project finance, PPP, infrastructure, private M&A and private equity transactions across multiple sectors, including energy, infrastructure and mining. He also has significant expertise in syndicated lending, having acted for lenders and borrowers on syndicated domestic and multijurisdictional financing transactions. Williams represents a variety of clients, including banks, life insurance companies, infrastructure funds, investors, developers and government agencies.

Consistently recommended project finance lawyers

Rose T. Bailey

Law firm: Torys LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1990

Rose T. Bailey serves as a partner at Torys LLP. She devotes her practice to commercial law, with a focus on finance, commercial real estate, renewable energy assets and projects and securitizations. Bailey boasts extensive experience in lending and bond financing transactions, joint ventures and the acquisition and financing of businesses, real estate, energy assets and mortgage portfolios. Her experience also includes advising both lenders and borrowers on international financing transactions. She has acted in many public transactions involving REITs and public bond offerings. Bailey has worked on transactions with Brookfield Asset Management and each of its energy, property and infrastructure platforms and First Capital Realty on its acquisitions, joint ventures, financings and development projects over the years. She has also worked with many of the Canadian lending institutions and their advisory groups.

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David A. Dell

Law firm: Torys LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1992

David A. Dell is a partner at Torys LLP, where heads the commercial real estate practice. He is also a member of the firm’s infrastructure and energy practices. Dell specializes in commercial real estate and infrastructure and energy projects. He has extensive experience in real estate joint ventures, project development and construction, lending, loan restructuring and workouts, leasing, real estate investment trusts and real property acquisitions and dispositions. His transactions involve a diverse range of real estate and infrastructure projects across North America and in Europe, including large shopping centres and office and mixed-use commercial, recreational and senior living developments. Dell also has experience in construction and project management arrangements for energy and power projects.

Danna Donald

Law firm: Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP


Year called to the Bar: 2004

Danna Donald is a partner at Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP’s project finance and construction and infrastructure group. She has several years of experience in advising and leading on project finance, PPP and AFP projects, with particular emphasis on the healthcare, education and transportation sectors. Donald also has extensive experience in renewable energy project finance, providing advisory services on several infrastructure and energy transactions, including the financing of some of North America’s largest wind and solar projects.

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Daniel A. Ford

Law firm: Torys LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1989

Daniel A. Ford is a partner at Torys LLP. He focuses on public infrastructure projects, project finance and financial services matters. Ford boasts extensive experience in representing sponsors, lenders, government authorities, borrowers and developers on a range of public infrastructure financing and development transactions, including PPP and AFP. He has acted in several commercial construction and project development transactions. Ford boasts extensive commercial lending experience, acting for both lenders and borrowers in large and medium structured finance transactions, syndicated and club loans and bond and note financings. He is also involved in representing shareholders, partners, owners and managers in corporate and partnership formation transactions and structuring, negotiation and preparation of asset and share purchase and sale agreements, joint venture agreements, servicing agreements and leasing and licensing agreements.

Aaron Fransen

Law firm: Stikeman Elliott LLP


Year called to the Bar: 2005

Aaron Fransen is a partner at Stikeman Elliott LLP’s mergers and acquisitions, banking and finance and project development and finance groups. His practice focuses on M&A and project finance of infrastructure and energy projects in the bond and bank markets. Fransen’s diverse clientele includes banks, securities dealers, technology companies, resource companies, media and telecom companies, government entities and private equity firms. Fransen is a former adjunct professor at Osgoode Hall Law School, where he taught business associations. He has written on various topics related to corporate and securities law.

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Tara A. Mackay

Law firm: Torys LLP


Year called to the Bar: 2002

Tara A. Mackay is a partner at Torys LLP. She devotes her practice to corporate and commercial transactions, with an emphasis on major capital projects, including public-private partnerships and alternative financing and procurement projects. Mackay represents private developers, public authorities, lenders, construction contractors and service providers in all aspects of the implementation of large-scale infrastructure and similar projects. She has been a fellow of the American College of Investment Counsel since 2015.

S. Paul Mantini

Law firm: Bennett Jones LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1977

S. Paul Mantini serves as a partner at Bennett Jones LLP. He specializes in commercial real estate, financing, public-private partnerships and gaming law. Mantini has been involved with the development and financing of many landmark projects, including the Toronto Eaton Centre, TD Centre, Brookfield Place, First Canadian Place, Scotia Plaza, Royal York Hotel, Trump Tower, Royal Bank Plaza, Bay-Adelaide Centre, Fifth Avenue Place, Bankers Hall, Telus Gardens, Casino Rama and Niagara Fallsview Casino. He was also involved in several innovative real estate transactions, including the first guarantee by a Canadian pension fund of a debt issue, the first public issue by a real estate co-tenancy, the first public issue of participating mortgage bonds, cross-border securitization of property and mortgage pools and the creation of REITs and private and public real estate investment funds. Mantini has authored several published articles and has lectured extensively on real estate and project finance.

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Juli Morrow

Law firm: Goodmans LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1979

Juli Morrow serves as counsel at Goodmans LLP. She focuses on commercial real estate, including financings (mortgage transactions, private placements and public offerings), acquisitions, dispositions, management and development agreements, joint ventures and partnerships. She has acted for lenders, landlords and tenants in credit tenant transactions. She has also represented the CPP Investment Board in a number of joint ventures, RioCan REIT in several acquisitions, joint ventures and financings, Oxford Properties in several leasing and development matters and financings, H&R REIT in a number of acquisitions, sales and financings, issuers and underwriters in IPOs of REITs and sponsors and investors in real estate-based funds.

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Seán C. O’Neill

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1997

Seán C. O’Neill is a partner and the industry group leader of the national power group at McCarthy Tétrault LLP. He boasts significant experience representing domestic and foreign acquirers, investors and sellers of a variety of power assets, including transmission and distribution, district energy and all conventional and alternative generation technologies. O’Neill has also assisted financial institutions and borrowers on project financings and re-financings of power projects and distribution systems across Canada and in the U.S. O’Neill regularly acts for project developers and sponsors negotiating commercial arrangements in the sector, including power purchase and energy service agreements, contract for differences, service contracts, conservation and demand management agreements and joint-venturing agreements.

Ella Plotkin

Law firm: Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1995 (ON); 2005 (England & Wales)

Ella Plotkin is a partner and the leader of the infrastructure and public-private partnership group at Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP. She has extensive experience in infrastructure development and finance and project finance in North America and throughout emerging markets. Plotkin advises project lenders, sponsors and procuring authorities on all aspects of project development and finance in the infrastructure, energy, telecom and natural resource sectors. She has advised participants on many key public-private partnership transactions in North America, including advising the bank syndicate lenders on the more than $1-billion financing for the Windsor-Essex Parkway in Ontario. Plotkin has also advised the concessionaire on the Merced Campus Redevelopment PPP project in California, the US 36 Toll Road project in Colorado and the Pennsylvania Bridges project, which is the largest PABS issuance in U.S. history. Plotkin is a member of the steering committee for Women in Energy Canada.

Fred M. Rubinoff

Law firm: Goodmans LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1986

Fred M. Rubinoff is a partner at Goodmans LLP’s real estate group. He specializes in secured transactions, construction financing, asset purchases and sales, land development and joint ventures. His recent transactional experience includes acting for Minto Apartment REIT’s IPO and acquisition of a portfolio of 22 multi-residential rental properties from Minto Properties. Rubinoff has also represented Leadon Investment in its US$1.1-billion acquisition of SilverBirch Hotels & Resorts and the completion of a $716-million post acquisition financing , Port Credit West Village Partnership’s purchase and financing of the acquisition of a Port Credit tract of land from Imperial Oil, Citibank and Brookfield on cross-border purchase financing for Westmont hotel portfolio. He has advised Menkes on commercial and residential credit facilities for Harbour Plaza, Osmington on Union Station Project, Macquarie on CMBS table funding arrangements with IMC and TD Bank’s re-sale of Yonge-Eglinton site to RioCan REIT.

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Godyne N.L. Sibay

Law firm: McCarthy Tétrault LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1985

Godyne N.L. Sibay is the Ontario regional managing partner at McCarthy Tétrault LLP. She is also a senior partner at the firm’s real property, project development and infrastructure group in Toronto. Sibay has extensive experience in project development, public-private partnerships, public and private procurement, commercial real estate, leasing, acquisition and construction matters. Her recent clients include hospitals, universities, municipalities, professional sports organizations, government agencies, Crown corporations, professional sport team owners, equity investors, consortia, developers, lenders, Infrastructure Ontario, the procurement agency of the government of the province for large public infrastructure projects and Metrolinx. She is known for the procurement and delivery of significant landmark infrastructure and development projects across Canada.

Gregory G. Southam

Law firm: Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1998

Gregory G. Southam serves as a senior partner at Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP’s commercial real estate, infrastructure, corporate and capital markets practices. He is also a member of the firm’s management committee. Southam has taken a lead role in some of the largest and most significant public-private partnership and infrastructure projects in Canada and the U.S., including transportation, social and urban renewal and alternative energy asset classes. He has also worked on some of Canada’s largest office development, construction and hospitality sector transactions. Southam has significant experience in a variety of corporate and commercial matters, including share and asset acquisitions, construction matters, debt financings, gaming matters, leasing, and acquisitions and dispositions of commercial real estate holdings.

John W. Torrey

Law firm: Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP


Year called to the Bar: 1988

John W. Torrey is a partner at Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP. He specializes in lending transactions. Torrey boasts extensive experience in all areas of lending, with expertise in project and acquisition financings and in all aspects of mine finance. He acts on behalf of both borrowers and lenders and has significant experience with a broad range of financings in a several industries. Torrey regularly represents, or acts opposite, most banks active in Canada. He is also familiar with counsel active in this area. Torrey’s familiarity with those active in Canadian lending consistently proves an asset in effective and efficient file management.

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