About TAL

The Transit Analytics Lab (TAL) of the University of Toronto, established in 2020 with University of Toronto funding from the Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering Dean’s Strategic Fund, is headed by UTTRI associated faculty Professor Amer Shalaby, an expert in urban public transit.

The Transit Analytics Lab brings together:

  • Transportation and technology researchers from across the University of Toronto;
  • Transit systems in the Greater Toronto & Hamilton Area; and
  • Private sector software providers.

The Transit Analytics Lab builds on the strength of UTTRI, one of Canada’s largest transportation research institutes and a recognized world leader in developing analytical tools and models of transport demand and performance.

It aims to undertake a wide range of activities including research and development, creation of a data analytics platform, workshops, an international symposium, education, and professional development training.

It will facilitate:

  • Fostering innovation in transit data-driven tools (analytics) using advanced methods of data science, machine learning, artificial intelligence, simulation and statistics;
  • Developing standards & integration methods to accelerate the advancement of transit analytics;
  • Training of U of T students (across the university) in advanced data-driven methods and their application to public transit decision-making;
  • Exposing the professional community through knowledge transfer activities to advanced analytics; and
  • Establishing U of T as a national and international leader in transit data analytics.



TAL Research

TAL’s Objectives

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TAL’s Research Program

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Funded Research


TAL People


Postdoctoral Fellows

Amer Shalaby


TAL Director Dr. Amer Shalaby is Professor and Bahen/Tanenbaum Chair in Civil Engineering at the University of Toronto, and Co-Director of the Centre for Automated and Transformative Transportation Systems (CATTS). Dr. Shalaby is specialized in transit planning and operations, intelligent transportation systems, and transportation planning for large-scale events and mega cities. His research program has been sponsored by many organizations from both the public and private sectors. Read here to know more about Prof. Shalaby. 

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Brendon Hemily

Senior Advisor

Dr. Brendon Hemily is an independent transit consultant with 35 years of international transit experience. He focuses on best practices and innovation in the transit industry, in the areas of policy, management, planning, and the effective use of advanced technology. Prior to 2000, Brendon worked at the Canadian Urban Transit Association (CUTA), where he was responsible for all of CUTA’s research, statistical, and technical services.

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Siva Srikukenthiran


Dr. Siva Srikukenthiran is the Chief Data Scientist at Ratio.City. He previously was a Research Associate at the University of Toronto Transportation Research Institute, where he managed research programmes in transit simulation, schedule optimization and travel survey data collection, and developed software systems for survey data collection and transit network simulation. He has a PhD in Civil Engineering from the University of Toronto.

Willem Klumpenhouwer

Postdoctoral Fellow

Dr. Willem Klumpenhouwer's research focuses on the performance of transit systems, including passenger rail, transit reliability, demand-responsive transit systems, transit accessibility and equity, and visualization. Willem has a PhD in Civil Engineering from the University of Calgary where he studied the stochastic movement of buses and the optimal time point placement on bus routes. He also holds a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Theoretical Physics from the University of Guelph.

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Diego Silva

Postdoctoral Fellow

Dr. Diego Silva's research bridges transportation and artificial intelligence for large-scale data analysis. He is interested in connecting the cutting-edge computational methods to build better and reliable mobility in cities. Diego has a PhD in Computer Science from the Federal University of ABC/ Brazil. Diego is also a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu instructor at the U of T Grappling Club, and he loves to play soccer.

Affiliated Professors

Graduate Students - Current

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Roger Chen

Roger Chen is an MASc candidate at the University of Toronto's Department of Civil & Mineral Engineering. He received his BASc in Civil Engineering at the University of Waterloo, specializing in transportation and statistics. His research is currently focused on using machine learning and statistical models to investigate transit ridership and performance trends following COVID-19. He enjoys playing the clarinet and travelling.

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Feras El Said

Feras is a PhD student at the University of Toronto Department of Civil & Mineral Engineering. His current research focuses on developing models and control strategies to streamline passenger and train flows via the application of traffic flow theory, simulation, and reinforcement learning. He received his BEng in Civil Engineering from An-Najah National University, Palestine, and his MASc from Concordia University, Canada. Feras enjoys nature, biking, table tennis, BBQ, coffee, and reading.

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Alaa Itani

Alaa is a PhD candidate in the Department of Civil and Mineral Engineering. Her research interest is in the field of bus-hailing and flexible transit services. Alaa holds an MASc from the University of Toronto where her research focused on managing unplanned subway disruptions and she holds a BE in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the American University of Beirut.

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Kareem Othman

Kareem Othman is a PhD candidate at the University of Toronto Department of Civil & Mineral Engineering working under the co-supervision of Professor Amer Shalaby and Professor Baher Abdulhai. His research interests include transit management, adaptive arterial control, connected vehicles, and autonomous vehicles. He holds BASc and MASc degrees from Cairo University. Kareem enjoys playing and watching football.

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Jilin Song

Jilin is a PhD student at the University of Toronto Department of Civil & Engineering. He has a BASc in Civil Engineering from University of British Columbia and an MSc in Civil and Environmental Engineering from UC Berkeley. Jilin's research focuses on workforce planning in public transportation. He enjoys traveling and checking out maps.

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Jack Tattersall

Jack is a Master’s student interested in public transit operations and planning, particularly fare and service integration, regional mass transit networks, and railway operations. He completed his undergrad at the University of Toronto in Civil Engineering in 2022.

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Jiahao Wang

Jiahao Wang is a PhD student at the University of Toronto Department of Civil & Mineral Engineering. He received an MSc in computer science from University of Ottawa, and a BEng in computer science from Sichuan University. His current research focuses on transit management optimization using deep learning and reinforcement learning methods. He enjoys skiing and playing guitar.

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Chandler White

Chandler is a PhD candidate at the University of Toronto Department of Civil and Mineral Engineering. He has a BASc in Civil Engineering from the University of British Columbia. He was involved heavily in the UBC ITE Student Chapter, and later the UT-ITE. Chandler’s PhD research focusses on pedestrian modelling and multi-modal coordination on urban rail transit lines.

Graduate Students - Past

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Rami Al-Sahar

CivMin MASc 2021

Rami's research focuses on social media analytics and understanding the perception of public transit riders. Rami has an MEng in Structural Engineering from the University of Western Ontario and a BASc in Civil Engineering from Kuwait University. In his free time, Rami loves doing all things sports, especially soccer.

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Zahra Ansarilari

CivMin PhD 2022

Zahra's research focuses on improving public transit services. There are so many aspects regarding public transit that need to be enhanced; Zahra is working on minimizing transfer times through optimization models and machine learning approaches. She enjoys playing piano and exploring different parts of cities by walking, biking and public transit.

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Jinyi Chen

PhD 2022

Jinyi was a direct doctoral student at Southeast University and a visiting doctoral student at the University of Toronto Department of Civil & Mineral Engineering. She has a BASc in transportation engineering from Chang'an University. Jinyi's research interests include efficiency and resilience of urban rail transit system, passenger traffic congestion propagation, operation and management under operational failures, etc. She likes running, singing and travelling.

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Wen Xun Hu

CivMin PhD 2022

Wen Xun's research focuses on the optimization of transit performance using machine learning methods. She likes reading, collecting stones, and travelling.

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Lisa Li

CivMin MASc 2021

Lisa's research focuses on understanding people’s travel behaviour and need for information provision using data from a transit trip planning app. She holds a BASc in Civil Engineering from the University of Toronto. In her free time, Lisa enjoys drawing, swimming, and getting lost in a book.

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Rick Liu

CivMin MASc 2022

Rick's research interests include transit equity, transit redundancy and responses to transit disruptions. He also completed his BASc at the University of Toronto. In his free time, he enjoys cycling, hiking, and playing the PC game "Cities: Skylines."

Contact us

Interested in learning more about TAL? Email amer.shalaby@utoronto.ca with any questions.

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