10 Things to Know About Aurora | Know Your Community
One of Canada’s most affluent communities, the town of Aurora is also rich in history and local pride. The community is tight-knit but on the growth track – projected to reach over 70,000 by 2031.
1. Aurora, by the numbers
- Population: according to the 2016 Canadian Census, the town had a population of 55,445 but is estimated to be at 62,000 as of 2020, per Wikipedia
- Location: categorized as a town, Aurora is located in central York Region within the Greater Toronto Area and the Golden Horseshoe of Southern Ontario, north of Richmond Hill and in part situated upon the Oak Ridges Moraine
- Size and standings: as part of the 2016 Canadian Census, the town of Aurora ranked by population as the 95th largest in Canada
2. One of the wealthiest towns in Canada
Aurora is considered to be one of the 10 wealthiest towns in Canada, supported by findings in 2010 which reported the average household income to be $155,463.
The town is also rich in history. So much so that the town is well noted for its efforts in historical preservation and received the The Prince of Wales Prize for Municipal Heritage Leadership award in 2008 and the Lieutenant Governor’s Ontario Heritage Award for Community Leadership in heritage conservation and promotion in 2009. In 2006, Northeast Old Aurora received designation as a provincial Heritage Conservation District.
Did you know? Aurora was the childhood home of former Canadian Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson.
3. A community to learn and grow
Living in a smaller town doesn’t mean residents are limited on options. As far as education, the town is served by three major school boards:
- York Region District School Board, who operate the ten following public elementary schools and two high schools within Aurora:
- Aurora Heights Public School
- Aurora Grove Public School
- Wellington Public School
- Regency Acres Public School
- Northern Lights Public School
- Highview Public School
- Hartman Public School
- Devins Drive Public School
- Rick Hansen Public School
- Lester B. Pearson Public School
- Dr. G.W. Williams Secondary School
- Aurora High School
2. York Catholic District School Board, who operate five Catholic elementary schools and two high schools within Aurora:
- Our Lady of Grace Elementary School
- St. Jerome Catholic Elementary School
- Holy Spirit Elementary School
- St. Joseph Catholic Elementary School
- Light of Christ Catholic Elementary School
- Cardinal Carter Catholic High School
- St. Maximillian Kolbe Catholic High School
3. Conseil scolaire de district catholique Centre-Sud (the French-language Catholic school board, who operate one elementary school and one high school within Aurora:
- Renaissance Catholic High School
- École secondaire catholique Renaissance (formerly ÉSC Cardinal-Carter)
As far as local private school options, parents looking to send their children to schools within Aurora are not short on options, with the top-rated private and independent school for boys, St.Andrew’s College, situated in town. Other local private school options include: Aurora Preparatory Academy and Aurora Montessori School.
4. Plenty of greenspace to enjoy
Protected under the Ontario Government’s Greenbelt legislation, there is an enforced limit on growth and development for a large portion of the southeastern area of Aurora. While there is still plenty of room for future growth in unprotected and yet undeveloped areas of the town, there is a clear emphasis on preservation in Aurora, which makes for a community of visible historic pride and care of landscape.
Aurora’s greenspace is plentiful, with parks and trails, river valleys and the Oak Ridges Moraine offering residents and visitors several options when it comes to enjoying the great outdoors. There are 62 parks covering over 800 acres in Aurora, many of which are connected by trails which span approximately 62 km, and designed to accommodate hiking, jogging, and even skiing along designated routes. Aurora’s interactive map will help you to find and navigate the local parks, dog parks, courts, facilities, sports fields and trails.
5. Big things are happening in Aurora!
- There is a proposal by the Regional Municipality of York to designate the area surrounding Aurora’s GO Station as a Major Transit System – a classification which would promote further development of the area and increased job density in the area
- The Aurora Promenade – part of the town’s 2010 Official Plan review, The Aurora Promenade is an ongoing project with aims to stimulate new and re-development, attract new residents along the Yonge and Wellington Street corridors and reignite activity within the downtown core. Per the official website: ”The Aurora Promenade represents the foundation of Aurora’s rich and proud history and its potential future. Centered on the historic heart at the intersection of the Town’s two main streets, this area extends out to encompass a significant and unique part of this community that in many ways represents its very essence.”
- Aurora Town Square – part of Aurora’s revitalization plan, this project will bring together two community spaces (an outdoor square and a community facility) and is aimed at uniting residents of all ages with art, music, community events, shopping and more.
More information on ongoing and proposed community improvements in Aurora can be found here.
6. Aurora is a great place to do and invest in business
Aurora has a strong community based in entrepreneurial spirit. The town comprises over 1,300 businesses, which includes 150 major industries and head offices. The town is focused on nurturing the local economy and attracting new business, with its new premier Business Park, located in the Leslie Street and Highway 404 area. While the community certainly offers that “small-town feel”, the Town of Aurora keeps it all in balance with all the resources, opportunities and supports of an urban centre.
For a breakdown of business costs, labour, housing and income, check out the Invest in Aurora Community Profile page.
7. Aurora will get you where you need to go
Living in Aurora means enjoying where you are – with plenty of options to get where you need to go. As far as transit, the town is serviced by York Region Transit (YRT) and operates several local routes and the Viva Blue Bus Rapid Transit Service, with proposed plans to link Newmarket and Richmond Hill Yonge Street Rapidway segments through Aurora. The Aurora GO station is a stop on GO’s Barrie line, with trains departing every 15-30 minutes heading southbound towards Toronto during weekday morning peak periods.
8. Top-tier healthcare within reach
While there is no hospital located directly within the town’s boundaries, Newmarket’s South Lake Regional Health Centre is nearby, with all designated emergency and public health services being offered and managed by York Region. This includes the Mackenzie Health Network, and recently-opened state-of-the-art Cortellucci Vaughan Hospital, amongst several other top-tier medical facilities and emergency services.
9. Staying active in Aurora is easy
With lush greenspaces, conservation areas and scenic rolling hills, it’s easy to get inspired in Aurora’s outdoor landscape. Keeping residents engaged and active, the town offers several parks, trails, playgrounds, and sports-designated areas to partake in.
The town boasts an excellent (and growing) selection of sports fields, including 69 soccer fields and 18 baseball diamonds. The town’s baseball and soccer facilities are known to be some of the best in the region owing Aurora’s rigorous construction and maintenance standards. If skiing is your thing, residents in Aurora can cross country ski at Sheppard’s Bush Conservation Area along 3km of trails.
The town is also home to its own Aurora Sports Hall of Fame – where athletes like St. Louis Blues Forward Robert Thomas, who brought the Stanley Cup to his hometown in 2019, are featured. To stay in the loop, check out Aurora’s seasonal program guides, which feature the best in local recreation, events and more.
10. Aurora is the best of both worlds
A friendly community rooted in rich history and celebrated heritage, where the landscapes are enjoyed and revered, this is a town that can appreciate their past – but is far from stuck in it. With major ongoing development proposals and plans in place, this town continues to grow and build upon its reputation as an ideal environment to live, invest, and build your business. Combining small-town charm with big-city resources and support, the town of Aurora truly is a community for anyone looking to “have it all”.
14799 Yonge Street
Aurora, ON, L1G 1N1
Office: (905) 727-3154
Fax: (905) 727-7702