Canadian Growth City No. 1: Toronto Tops U-Haul Rankings

Mar 4, 2016

One-Way Truck Arrivals in Toronto Jumped 12 Percent in 2015

Ice skating under the Freedom Arches at Nathan Phillips Square. Toronto is the U-Haul No. 1 Canadian Growth City for 2015

Ice skating under the Freedom Arches at Nathan Phillips Square. Credit: City of Toronto.

Canada’s most populous city is predictably its busiest for U-Haul truck rental activity.

While that alone doesn’t indicate growth, U-Haul locations here saw 50.9 percent of truck rental customers entering the city as opposed leaving last year and welcomed 12 percent more U-Haul arrivals year-over-year.

Those numbers put Toronto atop the heap as the No. 1 Canadian Growth City for 2015.

Here are some tips for moving or living in Toronto!  Plan Ahead: Reserve a Truck in Advance for Your Summer Move

“There are a lot of condo developments still bringing people into the downtown area, and general business itself is strong in Toronto right now,” said Antony Grocott, U-Haul Company of Eastern Ontario president. “It’s just the place to be. You’ve got everything going on.”

Growth rankings are determined by the net gain of incoming one-way U-Haul truck rentals versus outgoing rentals for the past calendar year.

Just as arrivals were up in Toronto, so were departures – 10 percent over the same period. The overall spike in U-Haul traffic made Toronto a lively location for do-it-yourself movers.

Toronto was followed in the growth rankings by: 2. Chilliwack 3. Victoria 4. Huntsville 5. Ottawa 6. Barrie 7. Kamloops 8. Halifax 9. Duncan 10. Kingston.

Ruth Ortiz, general manager of U-Haul Moving & Storage at StockyardsQuote about Toronto Growth District (355 Weston Road), has lived in Toronto all her life and is not surprised to see large numbers of customers dropping off U-Haul truck rentals at her store location.

“There is high demand for our products and services,” Ortiz noted. “We have great teamwork between the U-Haul stores and our independent U-Haul neighborhood dealers. I have one dealer right down the street and another dealer one block over. Anything I don’t have at that moment that the customer needs, I send them to our dealers and it works out well.”

Ortiz added that what she likes best about Toronto is that it’s always changing.

“It seems like there is another business, skyscraper or condo being built at seven out of every 10 intersections,” she said. “Shopping malls are expanding. There a lot of events, a lot of sports. Students come for the schools – we have the University Toronto, York University and others.”

While U-Haul migration trends don’t correlate directly to population or economic growth, the growth cities data is a strong gauge of how well cities are attracting and keeping residents.

Toronto was named the U-Haul No. 4 Canadian Destination City for 2014 last summer after a lengthy run atop that list. Destination rankings are based solely on incoming U-Haul traffic and don’t account for net gains/losses like growth rankings. U-Haul will release its annual destination rankings in late May at unofficial start of “Moving Season.”

Additional photo credit: Waterfront skyline (thumbnail) and aerial skyline (featured image) by City of Toronto.

Toronto growth facts

More on Toronto

  1. Toronto garnered a lot of acclaim in February as the host of NBA All-Star Weekend, which featured the slam dunk contest, 3-point shootout, skills challenge and, of course, the all-star game. The Raptors are having an impressive basketball season to extend a string of sports success in Toronto, where the Blue Jays reached baseball’s American League Championship Series last fall.
  2. U-Haul customers in Toronto have access to three stores, including U-Haul Moving & Storage of Stockyards District, and nearly 30 U-Haul neighborhood dealers in the city limits (and many more just outside of town).
  3. Toronto is Canada’s largest city, the fourth largest in North America, and is home to a diverse population of about 2.8 million residents, according to the city. Toronto’s 2015 employment survey stated that jobs grew by 2.7 percent and the city’s GDP grew by 3.4 percent year-over-year.


  • “Toronto is one of those places where so much is going on that it’s just where you end up. U-Haul continues to grow here, and we need to grow more every year, every month, every day to get better and meet our customers’ needs. Toronto will always be one of those places that drives; it’s never going to dry up for movers going out or coming in. It’s one of those hustle-and-bustle places.” — Antony Grocott, U-Haul Company of Eastern Ontario president
  • “Customers are taking advantage of our low rates and how well our trucks are set up. We get comparisons from customers who have used other companies and hear how much better our equipment and customer service is. Our customers are also taking advantage of moving with our U-Box self-storage containers because you can load them and then put them on our trailers and take them with you.” — Ruth Ortiz, GM at U-Haul Moving & Storage at Stockyards District

What is your favorite thing about visiting or living in this city?  Share in the comments!

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