Central GTA Access
The Greater Toronto Area (GTA) is Canada’s largest business hub. York Region – centrally located in the heart of the GTA – plays a significant role in the local and Canadian economy.
Locating your business in York Region creates opportunity around every turn. Whether your business is looking for new clients, strategic partners, or top-level talent, or all of that – it’s here.
With interconnected access to downtown and the world, your business has every opportunity to thrive globally.
An Economic Powerhouse
- 1.2+ million residents
- 616,000 local jobs (est. 2022)
- 1,300 new businesses annually (10-year average)
- 73% of residents have post-secondary education
- $81.4 billion GDP (est. 2022)
- 5 of the Top 10 Greater Toronto Area’s corporate Research & Development spenders
- 3rd largest business hub in Ontario (55,660 employers)
- 2nd largest ICT sector in Canada (4,600+ companies – highest density overall)
- 2nd largest Finance, Insurance & Real Estate sector in Ontario – 4,900+ firms
- Canada’s largest Auto Parts and Electronics manufacturing cluster
- 3rd largest Manufacturing sector in Ontario (2,500+ manufacturers)
- 4th largest Food and Beverage processing hub in Canada
Data sources: Statistics Canada, York Region Planning & Economic Development, Re$earch Infosource.
The Region is home to a highly-skilled workforce and attracts world-class talent from the GTA and abroad.
- Highest concentration of residents in tech occupations in the Toronto-Waterloo Corridor
- 3rd highest rate of university education among Canada’s largest municipalities
- 73% of population has post-secondary education
- 22 of Toronto Area’s top 25 neighborhoods 
- 6 of GTA’s Top 10 primary and secondary schools 
- 5 of Greater Toronto Area’s top 10 “best to live” cities and towns for new Canadians 
Data Sources: Statistics Canada CBP, MoneySense Magazine, 2017/2018; Fraser Institute Ranking, 2017/18; Maclean’s Magazine, 2018.
Your First Step To International Talent Starts Here
The Regional Municipality of York’s Economic Strategy division is the designated pre-qualification and referral partner for companies in York Region aiming to access Canada’s Global Skills Strategy programs.
500+ Foreign Companies Call York Region Home
If your company is thinking of expanding into the Greater Toronto Area, York Region is a central location with cost-saving advantages and home to an incredible talent pool. Our team is here to help!
Key Industry Sectors
- Information & Communications Technology: 4,600+ ICT companies – Canada’s 2nd largest tech cluster and densest relative to population
- Financial, Insurance & Professional Services: Ontario’s 2nd largest cluster with over 4,900+ firms across the region
- Automotive Parts & Auto-Tech: Canada’s largest auto parts and electronics manufacturing cluster, home to Canada’s largest auto innovation hub (GM’s CTC Markham Campus), and a leading automotive head office location in Canada
- Life Science & Health-Tech: Over 300 life sciences and healthcare technology companies and home to Canada’s first “smart hospital”, Cortellucci Vaughan Hospital
- Building & Construction: $3.3 billion construction value in 2018 – 2nd highest in Ontario and 6th in Canada
- Logistics & Distribution: Over 2,000 logistics, warehousing, and distribution companies supporting 20,000+ jobs
- Agri-Food: York Region is home to a vibrant and thriving agriculture and agri-food sector, and is the fourth-largest food and beverage processing hub in Ontario
There is a flourishing climate of creativity and a strong entrepreneurial and innovation culture in York Region. There are a diverse range of innovation resources available to support entrepreneurs in the early stages, as well as, for companies with a need to scale-up an existing business venture.
- The Regional Innovation Centre, ventureLAB, provides mentoring and programming to high-growth startups. Since 2011, companies supported by ventureLAB have raised more than $250 million in capital funding
- Entrepreneurs can incubate their ideas with the help of York University’s YSpace and Seneca College’s HELIX
Class-A Office To Co-Working
York Region is home to many significant office towers and business parks, but we also have over 30 co-working locations that provide opportunity for small businesses and entrepreneurs to access top-quality office space at a reduced cost. Many are supported by post-secondary institutions and global R&D companies including York University, Seneca College, IBM Canada, and others.
Spread throughout our 9 cities and towns these co-working spaces provide an opportunity to network and learn from other businesses. This helps to build a strong business community that also connects enterprise scale corporations with startups and entrepreneurs to help drive business growth and innovation.
GTA Cost Advantage
Within the Greater Toronto Area, York Region offers operational cost-saving advantages for businesses looking to leverage Canada’s largest business hub and the talent that lives here.
- GTA’s lowest municipal commercial and industrial property taxes
- 40% lower lease costs for Class A/B office versus downtown Toronto
- Up to 15% lower salary costs for experienced professionals compared to the downtown core (commute time trade-off)
- Range of location and cost alternatives across 9 local cities and towns
- A range of space alternatives to suit any budget and operational need: from co-location to industrial flex to Class A/B/C office
- Significant cost advantage versus the USA (taxes, employment, R&D)
- Free office parking versus average of $315/month per spot in Toronto’s downtown core
- Eligibility for Federal Government and Provincial Government incentives (case specific)
Future-Focused Urban Growth
York Region is investing heavily in transit and other infrastructure to support growth throughout the Region, but with a specific focus on four urban growth centres in Markham, Newmarket, Richmond Hill, and Vaughan.
- The Region’s four urban growth centres are Markham Centre, Newmarket Centre, Richmond Hill Centre / Langstaff Gateway, and the Vaughan Metropolitan Centre
- The only Region outside of the City of Toronto to have direct TTC subway access to Downtown Toronto
- 34 kilometres of Bus Rapid Transit, along with interconnectivity to the TTC, York Region Transit, VIVA, and GO Transit, and others make the Region highly connected without needing a vehicle