The Regional Municipality Of York


Apps, on-demand travel and autonomous vehicles changing the future of transportation

York Region announces partnership with the University of Toronto to prepare for the impacts of technology on transportation

Newmarket – York Regional Council approved a multi-year partnership with the University of Toronto’s iCity Centre for Automated and Transformative Transportation Systems (iCity-CATTS), as part of a coordinated action plan to prepare The Regional Municipality of York for the impacts of technology on transportation.

“Innovations in technology are revolutionizing the way we travel, and this partnership allows us access to industry experts and information not possible otherwise if we act alone,” said York Region Chairman and CEO Wayne Emmerson. “This investment for our future gives the Region a unique opportunity to learn about potential impacts these changes can have on our transportation network, and will help inform policy and infrastructure decisions.”

York Region has committed to funding the University of Toronto’s iCity-CATTS Study at a cost of $75,000 per year to a total of $300,000 over four years.

The University of Toronto’s iCity-CATTS is the first to study how ‘smart’ transportation technologies such as automated vehicles and e-sharing will affect people’s transportation choices, how businesses provide transportation as a service, and how cities should plan for those changes to achieve the best results for society.

This funding supports work the Region has already initiated to prepare for changes in transportation technology as well as initiatives approved in the 2016 Transportation Master Plan (TMP). Highlights include:

  • Testing new technology in the field; an example is York Region Transit vehicles now communicating with traffic signals with the use of new advancements in Bluetooth technology
  • Integration of technology during land use and policy decisions
  • Creating partnerships to leverage shared resources in response to new technology, such as through the Region’s partnership with Waze, a community-based traffic and navigation application company that provides real-time traffic information

“The result of this study provides us with some of the answers we are searching for,” said Town of Richmond Hill Regional Councillor Vito Spatafora, Chair of the Region’s Transportation Services. “With autonomous vehicles getting closer to becoming a reality on our roads, we can take this information and create more dynamic, inter-connected and efficient transportation systems with the increased potential for safety and cost savings.” 

The Regional Municipality of York consists of nine local cities and towns, and provides a variety of programs and services to 1.2 million residents and 51,000 businesses with 620,000 employees. More information about the Region’s key service areas is available at

- 30 -
Media Contact:
Nancy La Neve, Corporate Communications,
The Regional Municipality of York
Phone: 1-877-464-9675 ext. 71226 or Cell: 289-716-9605

York Region; Transportation; Apps The Regional Municipality of York en-US Media Release