Toronto is Canada’s largest city and the center of many business operations in the country. With a population of over 6 million, the metropolitan area compares with the metropolitan area of Chicago. It is a key logistics center which attracts many large international businesses because it can serve 60% of the North American market population within a 12-hour drive of Toronto’s Pearson International Airport. That airport is Canada’s busiest, handling an estimated 56,000 metric tons of cargo a year.
Rail in Toronto
Canada has a large and well-developed freight railway system. There are two major publically traded railway systems, Canadian National (CN) and Canadian Pacific (CP) railways. CN Rail is headquartered in Montreal Quebec with a major rail yard and hub in Toronto. The lines are connected throughout North America to the west coast of Canada with a major line running along the Mississippi River to New Orleans, Louisiana. CP Rail has its headquarters in Calgary, Alberta. However, the CP Rail’s Agincourt Yard, located in Toronto is one of the largest marshalling yards in Canada. CP freight lines extend from New York City, across the northern United States to the port of Vancouver.
Sea Ports in GTA
In addition to its role as a truck, rail and air hub, Toronto is an inland seaport offering lake maritime vessel shipping westward across the Great Lake system to the Central United States and Eastward through the St. Lawrence Seaway to the Atlantic Ocean and beyond. Toronto is the biggest container port on the Great Lakes. Currently, ships up to 12,000 Twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) that can hold 12,000 20′ foot shipping containers are moving along Great Lake routes to intercontinental destinations from Toronto.
Economic Activity in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA)
The 1989 Bi-national US-Canada Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and the 1994 Tri-national North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) launched a dramatic integration of economic activity over the continent and Toronto as a logistics hub has been a major beneficiary.
The Toronto area includes 5 adjoining Ontario counties on the North West corner of Lake Ontario. Mississauga, a large suburban community is widely considered the logistics center of Canada.
3PL in Toronto
There are approximately 40 major 3PL Warehouse Companies in the Toronto area, many of which operate chains of facilities across the country and provide trucking and transportation across the border into the United States and beyond. Many of the companies that operate out of Toronto are part of international 3PL operations with centers of operations all over the world.
One of the largest facilities is operated has 1,113 employees in 29 separate warehouse facilities. The company provides contract logistics: transportation management, retail fulfillment services, spare parts logistics services, and reverse logistics. It serves the healthcare industry, retail, and technology sectors over all of North America.
Another major 3PL warehouse provider located In Mississauga, Ontario operates a 96,000 square foot warehouse facility. The company offers customer service, delivery services, and large-scale order fulfillment as well as warehousing and inventory management services. The transportation service includes intermodal freight across truck, rail, air and lake maritime.
Pickering, Ontario, a Toronto metro area community is the home of a unique 3PL system that grew out of a health and beauty aid manufacturing business. It offers complete third-party logistics services specializing in pharmaceutical and medical products. The facilities are especially licensed by Health Canada to store and distribute drugs and natural health products as well as Class I and II medical devices. Shandex operates a state of the art electronic temperature and environmental monitoring system as well as real-time inventory tracking using RF technology. They offer racked and bulk climate controlled shipping, storage, cross docking, as well as kitting and assembly services.
If you are looking for 3PL services for your business, consider Toronto. We can help. 3PLCompanies.net is the only site that rigorously screens 3PL companies to find the best match. Please contact us to learn more.