Ajax is one of the most desirable towns in the Greater Toronto Area. This waterfront community is situated on Lake Ontario, which translates to plenty of beaches, walking trails (including part of the Great Lakes Waterfront Trail that stretches all the way from Niagara-on-the-Lake to Brockville), green space, and parks. For instance, locals love Paradise Beach and Ajax Waterfront Park, which features plenty of lake access, along with tennis courts, children’s playgrounds, and picnic areas. The 283-hectare Greenwood Conservation Park and Rotary Park are also nearby. Alternatively, if you prefer to stay active indoors, the town has a number of community centres and recreational programs to choose from, such as the Ajax Boxing Club, the Ajax Judo Club, the Ajax Skating Club, and the Rock Oasis Rock Climbing Facility, all of which operate out of the Ajax Community Centre. The Audley Recreation Centre and Ajax Sportsplex, which was originally built for the 2015 PanAm Games, also have sports facilities and are located in Ajax. The area also has plenty of other attractions like the famous Ajax Downs Racetrack and Durham Distillery. The Toronto Zoo also isn’t far away. Beyond the many family-friendly attractions and outdoor activities that Ajax provides residents, the GTA town is also known for its top-tier healthcare, education, and public transportation systems, which we describe in more detail below.
Quality and diversity of education in Ajax
Public schools in Ajax are operated by the Durham District School Board and the Durham Catholic District School Board. In total, the two school boards run 137 and 51 schools in the Durham Region, which includes those in Ajax. Some of the public secondary and elementary schools in Ajax include Ajax High School, Notre Dame Catholic Secondary School, Rosemary Brown Public School, and Carruthers Creek Public School. If you wish to enrol your child in a private or Montessori school, you can find a number of private educational institutions in Ajax, such as Blaisdale Montessori, Brackendale Montessori, Milestone Montessori, or Trafalgar Castle School or Blyth Academy in neighbouring Whitby. Further, post-secondary institutions abound in and around Ajax, so residents will have many options to choose from. Right in the Durham Region are Trent University Durham GTA, Durham College, and Ontario Tech University, meaning you will only have to drive a short distance to reach any of these post-secondary institutions. That said, since Ajax is only a short distance from the City of Toronto, students will have access to the many universities located there, like the world-renowned University of Toronto, George Brown College, York University, Seneca College, Toronto Metropolitan University (formerly Ryerson University), Humber College, Sheridan College, Toronto Film School, and the Ontario College of Art & Design University (OCAD).
Most populous cities in Ajax
Ajax itself is home to just over 121,000 people. The town is made up of a number of neighbourhoods, including Riverside, Applecroft, Discovery Bay, Duffins Bay, Clover Ridge, Pickering Beach, Lakeside, Memorial Village, Lake Vista, Downtown Ajax, Audley South, Carruthers Creek, Westney Heights, Hermitage, Audley North, Salem Heights, Deer Creek, South Greenwood, Duffins Crossing, and Meadow Ridge.
Quality of infrastructure for Ajax
As part of the Durham Region and the Greater Toronto Area, Ajax is extremely accessible. For local transit, there are a number of bus routes operated by Durham Region Transit. Meanwhile, to travel elsewhere in the GTA, including to downtown Toronto, Metrolinx’s GO Transit has several bus and train stops in Ajax. Trains from Ajax can arrive at Toronto Union Station in under an hour. Although Ajax does not have its own Via Rail station, the nearby city of Oshawa does, and Via Rail offers train travel all across Canada, including to Ottawa, Montreal, Quebec City, and beyond. The closest airport to Ajax is Oshawa Executive Airport, which is a small municipal airport. However, Toronto Pearson International Airport is roughly a 40 minute drive away. Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport is even closer and also has international flights via Porter Airlines and Air Canada. If your preferred mode of transportation is driving, then you will love the convenience of living in Ajax, which offers easy access to Highway 401, Highway 407, Highway 412, and Highway 418. When discussing healthcare, Ajax’s main hospital is Lakeridge Health Ajax and Pickering. However, Lakeridge Health Oshawa and Lakeridge Health Whitby are also nearby. Plus, since Ajax is part of the GTA, residents will also have access to some of the top hospitals in Canada, located in the City of Toronto, like Toronto General Hospital, North York General Hospital, Mount Sinai Hospital, St. Michael’s Hospital, St. Joseph’s Health Centre, Humber River Hospital, and the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids).
Safety and security for Ajax
The Durham Regional Police Service is tasked with keeping Ajax residents safe. That said, Ajax’s crime rates are well below the national average in Canada and the area is not natural disaster-prone. In fact, it is largely considered to be one of the safest GTA suburbs. In an emergency, always call 9-1-1.
Ajax property market
There’s no denying that the Ajax property market is hot. As one of the fastest-growing GTA neighbourhoods, the area is on the rise, and that makes for a strong housing market. The good news is that Ajax remains one of the more affordable parts of the GTA, which could make an investment here even more lucrative. Some of the most common property types that you will find in Ajax are townhomes, semi-detached homes, bungalows, detached homes, and two and three-storey homes. However, there are an increasing number of apartments and condos available.
Standard of living in Ajax
Ajax has a high standard of living thanks to its affordable housing market, plethora of green space, scenic lakefront, and close proximity to the City of Toronto. Together, this makes Ajax a wonderful place to call home - and residents know it. In fact, Toronto, which includes the GTA town of Ajax, was recently listed as one of the most liveable cities in the world. The Global Liveability Index 2023’s Liveability Report ranked Toronto as number nine after evaluating factors like stability, healthcare, culture & environment, and education.
Something wonderful about Ajax
Ajax is home to the Ajax Downs Racetrack, which remains one of the area’s top attractions. This racetrack was one of the first Quarter House racetracks in Canada. It opened in 1969 and was established by Alex Picov, a Ukrainian immigrant who had moved to Canada in 1921. Picov hoped to introduce Canadians to quarter horse racing, and to this day, horse racing is a popular activity in Ajax. Even more, the Picov family continues to operate the track. There is even an annual race, Canada’s richest Quarter Horse race, that is known as the Alex Picov Memorial. A little bit more about the racetrack’s history? It has been the starting point for many of Canada’s top jockeys. It also hosts the AQHA Bank of America Racing Challenge each year. Now, there is even a casino on-site, Casino Ajax, which is operated by Great Canadian Entertainment.