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Viva in York Region

Bus in terminal

York Viva Bus Rapid Transit

When complete, dedicated lanes in the centre of the road – rapidways – will allow rapid transit buses to move out of congested traffic, enabling people to get around York Region’s busiest corridors faster by using transit. With 34.5 km of planned segregated routes, they will provide more reliable service to travellers, with more frequent service of two to five minutes between arrivals in peak periods, and connections with GO Transit, regional transit and future extensions of the subway system. These rapidways will encourage the development of attractive and pedestrian-friendly places with a mix of uses along their routes where people will come to live, work, shop and play in close proximity. New stations along the routes will be designed for passengers’ comfort, safety and convenience. The first of the projects broke ground in winter 2009 and all are scheduled to be complete by 2020.

These projects are part of Metrolinx's $1.4 billion (2010) commitment to improving transit in York Region, just one component  of Metrolinx's Regional Transportation Plan.

A Master Agreement between Metrolinx, York Region Rapid Transit Corporation and The Regional Municipality of York governs the funding, implementation, and ownership of the Bus Rapid Transit program in York Region. York Region will oversee all day-to-day operations and routine maintenance decision-making and delivery for all elements of the bus rapidway. They will also operate the Viva service and administer all service contracts. Metrolinx will be responsible for asset preservation and replacement decision making and funding.

Viva map

Now being implemented:

Highway 7 East – Markham and Richmond Hill
Highway 7 West – Vaughan
Davis Drive – Newmarket
Yonge Street – Richmond Hill

Highway 7 East – Markham and Richmond Hill

Markham drawing

100% Complete

Work started in the Highway 7 right-of-way in April 2011. The first stretch of Viva rapid transit service launched ahead of schedule in August 2013 in the centre median, or rapidway, along Highway 7 from Bayview Avenue to Highway 404. In August 2014, the second stretch opened from Highway 404 to South Town Centre Boulevard, and the last piece to Warden Avenue opened at the end of 2014, with some finishing touches added in summer 2015.

News release - Metrolinx and York Region deliver $250 million in rapid transit expansion
News release - First Viva BRT station now open in York Region

Highway 7 West – Vaughan and Richmond Hill


Work started in 2013 to begin work in the Highway 7 right-of-way, and now the rapidway segment between Jane Street and Bowes Road will be open in fall 2016, and the segment west of Jane Street will be coordinated with the opening of the Toronto-York Spadina Subway Extension project. The second phase is a public-private partnership including the design, build and financing of 10 new vivastations and 12.6 new kilometres of the vivaNext rapidway in two locations: from Helen Street to Edgeley Boulevard along Highway 7; and from the Centre Street and Highway 7 intersection to Yonge Street via the existing Viva route on Centre Street and Bathurst Street. Construction is expected to begin in 2016, and be completed by the end of 2020.

Davis Drive – Newmarket

Newmarket drawing

Davis Drive Bus Rapid Transit dedicated rapidway will extend 2.6 km from Yonge Street to Roxborough Road and Patterson Street – just east of Southlake Regional Health Centre. Then it will keep it going another 2.3 km to Highway 404 – this stretch will run the same way Viva service currently does, in the curbside lane. Construction started in the Davis Drive right-of-way in May 2012. It is expected to open for Viva Service by the end of 2015.

News release - Metrolinx and York Region deliver $250 million in rapid transit expansion

Yonge Street – Richmond Hill and Newmarket

Richmond Hill drawing

Yonge Street Bus Rapid Transit dedicated rapidway will extend north from the Richmond Hill/Langstaff Urban Growth Centre at Highway 7 to 19th Avenue. The rapidway will connect people from the rest of the Greater Toronto Area to this busy and vibrant area. A new Bus Rapid Transit dedicated rapidway will provide a convenient way for riders to travel and avoid congestion along Yonge Street, linking to the Davis Drive rapidway for access to the hospital, Newmarket’s Heritage area and an improved Davis Drive. Preparations are underway, and construction in the Yonge Street right-of-way began in 2014, opening in December 2018.