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Community of Choice... for Business

Why Whitby for Advanced Manufacturing?

Advanced manufacturing companies choose to locate and expand in Whitby. Below are reasons why Whitby is their Community of Choice:

Convenient Transportation Links

Whitby is located in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and offers prime access to Canada's largest market of over 6 million people and 120 million people within a day's drive.

Whitby's established transportation infrastructure helps move people and goods throughout the province and beyond.

  • Located on Highway 401, the major east-west connection which links to Ontario's networks of highways, railway and air services which are fully integrated with the US. View our map.
  • Access to seven Ontario/US highway border crossings
  • Less than one hour from Toronto's Pearson International Airport, Toronto Island Airport, Oshawa Municipal Airport and the future Pickering Airport which support corporate air travel, cargo shipments and federal customs services
  • CN and CP mainline freight rail service
  • Local intermodal rail access
  • Access to three deep-water ports

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Skilled Work Force

Over 90% of Whitby residents, aged 25-64 years, have a high school certificate, post-secondary diploma or degree providing Whitby employers with access to an educated labour force with diverse experience in a range of occupations, and core competencies in:

  • Energy
  • Technology-based manufacturing
  • Transportation equipment
  • Metal fabrication
  • Machine controls
  • Automation
  • Process engineering
  • Information and communication technologies

You can read the Toronto Region Geographic Report (PDF, 3,330 kB)  to access demographics and view the extensive area from which Whitby companies draw employees.

Whitby's Labour Shed 

Click on the image below to open and/or print the map.

Map of Whitby's Labour Shed

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World-Class Education and Training

Manufacturers in Whitby have access to graduates from two local world-class educational institutions specializing in engineering, applied sciences and skilled trades. Both the University of Ontario Institute of Technology and Durham College have market-oriented mandates and offer a number of unique programs utilizing advanced facilities, for example:

University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT)

Specialized Programs:

    • Automotive, Materials and Manufacturing - the only graduate programs in automotive engineering in Canada: Masters of Applied Science and Masters of Engineering Programs in Automotive Engineering
    • Sustainable Energy - the only undergraduate degree programs in Nuclear Engineering and Energy Systems Engineering in Canada
    • Information and Communications - the only graduate program in Information Technology Security in Canada

      Advanced Facilities:
    • Integrated Manufacturing Centre (IMC) - is a unique Canadian educational showcase co-located at Durham College & UOIT. The fully-automated, industrial-grade, flexible manufacturing facility is capable of fabricating and assembling a wide range of products from raw materials with limited human intervention. The IMC serves as a model of the new standards in education in the fields of advanced manufacturing, mechatronics and engineering.
    • Mechanical, Automotive and Manufacturing Teaching Laboratories - teaching laboratories at UOIT that include:
      • Integrated engineering design centre
      • Component design laboratory
      • Energy centre
      • Solid mechanics and materials laboratory
      • Dynamics, kinematics and vibrations laboratory
      • Manufacturing laboratory.
    • Electrical, Computer and Software Teaching Laboratories - includes principal laboratories for electronics and mechatronics; controls and microprocessors; and power systems.

Durham College's Whitby Campus

Specialized Programs:

    • Metal Working
    • Machine Controls
    • Automation
    • Chemical Handling

More than 20,000 registered apprentices have completed various levels of in-school apprenticeship training programs in the construction, manufacturing and transportation sectors at the Whitby campus.

Apprenticeship Programs include:

    • General Machinist
    • Industrial Mechanic/Millwright
    • Metal Fabricator/ Precision Metal Fabricator
    • Tool and Die Maker
    • Electrician, Industrial, Construction/Maintenance
    • Facilities Mechanic/Technician
    • Plumber
    • Welder
    • Mobile Crane Operator
    • Small Engine Technician

Durham College's Corporate Training Services (CTS) provides customized training to individuals and businesses, designed to meet industry needs including business training directed at middle management, and skills training for salespeople and trades.

A Broader Network from Which to Recruit Talent

Over 30 university and college campuses are with a one hour drive of Whitby.

Click on the image below to open and/or print the map.

Map showing the distance from Whitby to Major Universities and Colleges

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Unique Facilities for Research & Commercialization

Specialized research, innovation and training facilities are available:

Automotive Centre of Excellence (ACE) at UOIT - is the first research, development and innovation centre of its kind in Canada that rents independent testing facilities to manufacturers of all kinds, start-up companies and researchers in Canada and world-wide.  This facility can test a full range of products including:

  • Trucks
  • Full coach buses
  • Light rail transit
  • Aerospace components
  • Military and agricultural applications
  • Alternative energy systems such as turbines and solar panels
  • Alternative fuel, hybrid and electric vehicles.

Testing Facility Features:

  • Working area of approximately 16,300 square metres
  • Two distinct areas: a core research facility and an integrated research and training facility
  • Core research facility - offering full climatic, durability and lifecycle testing, including one of the world's largest, most sophisticated climatic wind tunnels
  • Crosswind testing - the climatic wind tunnel has extreme weather capabilities along with a large yawning chassis dynamometer that, for the first time anywhere, tests properties in crosswinds. A solar array replicates the effects of the sun and is hydrogen-capable, allowing for alternative fuel cell development.
  • Integrated research and training facility - spanning five floors with dedicated research, education and training, as well as offices, laboratories, conference rooms and work areas.

Energy Research Centre (ERC) at UOIT - is home to the first lab-scale demonstration of a copper-chlorine cycle for thermo-chemical water splitting and nuclear hydrogen production. ERC's mission is to develop clean energy technologies and move them from laboratory to commercial and industrial application. As a direct result of research led by UOIT, many other countries have started copper-chlorine cycle programs for hydrogen production including France, Romania, England, India and China.

High Performance Computing - UOIT belongs to the Shared Hierarchical Academic Research Computing Network (SHARCNET), a multi-institutional consortium of Southern Ontario universities. SHARCNET accelerates the production of research results in the engineering, science, business and social sciences. SHARCNET enables hundreds of computers to link together to form a supercomputer, and represents a significant research tool for SHARCNET's members.

Office of Research Services and Innovation at Durham College - works with many companies on design work using Unigraphics (3-D drawings). The College also has both rapid prototype machine and plastic injection mould capability. They can also do environmental, destructive and non-destructive testing on all prototypes.

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Competitive Business Costs

Business costs are lower than most US centres and key competitors. The biggest cost savings include:

  • Land Prices and Lease Rates
  • Tax Rates 
  • Skilled Labour Costs 

1. Land Prices and Lease Rates

Whitby's industrial land prices and lease rates are lower than western/northern areas of the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). 

Industrial LandApprox. $300,000/acre
65% lower than western/northern GTA areas
(Source: CBRE, Q1 2013)
Industrial Lease RatesApprox. $4.75 lease cost/sq. ft. net
(Source: CBRE, Q1 2013)

2. Tax Rates

Corporate income tax rates (provincial and federal combined) are lower than any US state, Japan or France. Both the federal and Ontario governments have taken steps to reduce corporate income taxes.  Capital taxes were eliminated on July 1, 2010.

 Jan 1, 2013Jul 1, 2013
Federal 15% 15%
Provincial11%10%
Combined 26%25%

Source: Ontario Ministry of Finance and Canada Revenue Agency

The 13% Harmonized Sales Tax (HST), introduced in Ontario on July 1, 2010, replaces the federal goods and services tax (GST) and the Provincial Sales Tax (PST). The HST provides tax credits for sales tax paid on many inputs and capital investments, reduces tax compliance costs and taxes that would otherwise have been included in supplier prices.

3. Skilled Labour Costs

In KPMG's 2012 survey, The Competitive Alternatives, Canada was ranked the second most cost-effective location among nine established industrial countries studied. Of the G7 countries, Canada had the lowest total labour costs:

  • Total costs per employee are lowest in the United Kingdom, Canada and Italy.  This result reflects in part the weakness of the euro and the British pound.
  • 9% advantage over the US  

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