Google Alphabet to erect 'model 21st Century neighborhood' in Toronto waterfront

Sidewalk Labs’ plans to turn Toronto’s waterfront into a digitally-enabled sustainable community

TORONTO-One of Google's sister companies will help build a high-tech neighbourhood on Toronto's waterfront.

Sidewalk Toronto will include features such as an open digital infrastructure, flexible building designs, and new modes of mobility.

"I'm pleased to announce that Waterfront Toronto, [the city agency responsible for development, ] has found an extremely promising partner in Sidewalk Labs", Trudeau said.

This is a breaking news story.

The new 800-acre district on the shores of Lake Ontario, Waterfront Toronto, a massive new development in the Quayside neighborhood, was envisioned with the aim of "mixing people-centered urban design with cutting-edge technology".

"We are expanding our know-how by partnering with Sidewalk Labs to create a progressive, innovative community; one that addresses significant challenges and sets new standards around sustainability, affordable housing and community engagement, said Fleissig, in a press release".

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a statement that Sidewalk Toronto will "transform Quayside into a thriving hub for innovation and a community for tens of thousands of people to live, work, and play".

Sidewalk Labs, a unit of Google parent Alphabet, and Waterfront Toronto unveiled plans to build a digital district in Canada's largest city.

It is interesting to note that Sidewalk Labs is also working on an inventive project across NYC that would see old pay phones converted into a WiFi network that would provide high speed access to residents. This process will kick off with a community Town Hall on November 1, 2017. The community will incorporate climate-positive energy systems, self-driving transit and new construction techniques that can lower housing costs.

In addition to hoping the new neighbourhood will attract local businesses and startups, it will also serve as the new home to Google's Canadian headquarters with plans to move there once the project is complete.

Interestingly, Doctoroff was formerly New York City's deputy mayor under Mike Bloomberg, the billionaire who breought in cycle-friendly urban planner Janette Sadiq-Khan.

"This idea of building a neighborhood mostly from scratch and figuring out how to connect it and weave it into the rest of the city, and how to make it into a strong, vibrant neighborhood in its own right are the kinds of things we've been talking about at U of T for years", she said.

Trudeau said Google Canada is moving its headquarters to Toronto to oversee the project, that will begin with its first neighborhood called Quayside.

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