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The Regional Municipality of York, also called York Region, is a regional municipality in south-central Ontario, Canada, between Lake Simcoe and Toronto. It replaced the former York County in 1971. The 2006 census population was 892,712, making it more populous than all of Northern Ontario. It is the fastest growing census division in Canada, expected to surpass 1.5 million residents by 2031. The entire region is part of the Greater Toronto Area and the inner ring of Golden Horseshoe. The regional seat is in Newmarket.
York Region covers 1,776 square kilometers from Lake Simcoe in the north to the city of Toronto in the south. Its eastern border is shared with Durham Region, to the west is Peel Region, and Simcoe County is to the northwest.
Towns and cities in York Region include:
York Region's landscape includes farmlands, wetlands and kettle lakes, the Oak Ridges Moraine and over 2,070 hectares of regional forest, in addition to the built-up areas of its municipalities.
The economy of York Region is a mix. In general, the economies in its southern communities include a full range of businesses from industrial to high-tech. Further north, beginning in the northern sections of Vaughan and Markham, extensive wetlands and farmland still remain, although new housing developments continually consume space year after year. There are, naturally, ongoing conflicts between conservationists and developers over land use. In particular, conflicts over use of the Oak Ridges Moraine have been most contentious.
Major shopping centres located in York Region include:
The road network in York Region is remarkably 'grid-like', meaning most roads run north-south or east-west. The topography of the land has permitted roads to be set in predominantly straight lines. York Region assigned approximately 50 roads as York Regional Routes, meaning that the cost of maintaining of these roads is paid for by York Region.
The major highways in the Region are:
Most air travel is served by Toronto Pearson International Airport, Canada's largest airport. Toronto/Buttonville Municipal Airport is a regional airport in Markham, used for general aviation and executive jets. Buttonville is also home to Toronto Airways Flight School as well as Seneca College. There is also an unpaved airport called Hare Field, located in Holland Landing (East Gwillimbury).
York Region is served by:
Public schools, with classes up to grade 12, are administered by the York Region District School Board, which operates 180 schools. In addition, the York Catholic District School Board operates 95 schools with a curriculum based in Roman Catholic doctrine.
Seneca College of Applied Arts and Technology has three campuses located in York Region, in King, Markham and Newmarket. York University is located just outside of York Region's southern border, in Toronto.
York Region has an unusual assortment of points of interest, ranging from nature reserves to pioneer-era museums, to a modern amusement park.
In Vaughan, the major attractions include the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, located in the community of Kleinburg and features works by Canadian artists including Inuit and First Nations artists. Canada's Wonderland, which features roller coasters and other rides, concerts and fireworks shows, is also in Vaughan.
Heritage sites and historical museums in the Region include:
- Aurora Museum (Aurora)
- Georgina Village Museum (Georgina)
- King Township Museum (King)
- Markham Museum (Markham)
- RHLS Narrow Gauge Railway (Whitchurch-Stouffville)
- Sharon Temple (East Gwillimbury)
- Whitchurch-Stouffville Museum (Whitchurch-Stouffville)
Following is a sample of other attractions in the area:
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