Sidewalk Toronto

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Sidewalk Toronto

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About

Sidewalk Toronto is a joint effort by Waterfront Toronto and Alphabet’s Sidewalk Labs to create a new kind of mixed-use, complete community on Toronto’s Eastern Waterfront, beginning with the creation of Quayside. Sidewalk Toronto will combine forward-thinking urban design and new digital technology to create people-centred neighbourhoods that achieve precedent-setting levels of sustainability, affordability, mobility, and economic opportunity.

Waterfront Toronto

Waterfront Toronto was established in 2001 by the Government of Canada, Province of Ontario, and the City of Toronto to lead the renewal of the city’s waterfront in becoming a world-class archetype of post-industrial innovative urban development.

Sidewalk Labs

Sidewalk Labs is an Alphabet company that uses new technology to address big urban challenges and improve quality of life in cities, bringing together the urbanists who led New York City’s post-9/11 revival with the technologists who made Google one of the world’s most innovative companies.

Site

Sidewalk Toronto will begin with a new neighbourhood, called Quayside, located at Parliament Slip, just southeast of Downtown Toronto. Sidewalk Labs and Waterfront Toronto aim to bring the innovations advanced at Quayside to scale across the Eastern Waterfront, more than 325 hectares (800 acres) that represent one of North America’s largest areas of underdeveloped urban land.

Process

After exploring opportunities all over the world, Sidewalk Labs responded to a Request for Proposals issued in March 2017 by Waterfront Toronto to identify an innovation and funding partner. Following a rigorous evaluation process involving several local and international firms, Waterfront Toronto selected Sidewalk Labs. Throughout 2018, extensive public consultation and stakeholder engagement will inform and help shape Sidewalk Toronto’s Master Innovation and Development Plan, including public policy and regulatory impacts. The Plan will be subject to approval by the boards of both Waterfront Toronto and Sidewalk Labs. Its implementation will require a variety of municipal and governmental approvals.

Objectives

  • Establish a complete community that improves quality of life for a diverse population of residents, workers, and visitors.
  • Create a destination for people, companies, startups, and local organizations to advance solutions to the challenges facing cities, such as energy use, housing affordability, and transportation.
  • Make Toronto the global hub of a rising new industry: urban innovation.
  • Serve as a model for sustainable neighbourhoods throughout Toronto and cities around the world.

Located just southeast of Downtown Toronto, the Eastern Waterfront contains more than 325 hectares (800 acres) of land subject to future revitalization, including Quayside and the Port Lands.

Vision

The Eastern Waterfront will be a new type of place that combines the best in urban design with the latest in digital technology to address some of the biggest challenges facing cities, including energy use, housing affordability, and transportation.

It will be a place that embraces adaptable buildings and new construction methods to make housing and retail space more affordable. A place where people-centred street designs and a range of transportation options make getting around more affordable, safe, and convenient than the private car. A place that encourages innovation around energy, waste, and other environmental challenges to protect the planet. A place where public spaces welcome families to enjoy the outdoors all day and all night and where community ties are strong. A place that’s enhanced by digital technology and data, without giving up the privacy and security that everyone deserves.

Knowing that great neighbourhoods aren’t planned from the top down, Sidewalk Toronto will create the conditions for a community to be built and innovations launched by people, companies, startups, academic centres, and local organizations over many years. Sidewalk Toronto aims to make the Eastern Waterfront the global hub of a new industry focused on urban innovation to improve the quality of city life, tapping into Toronto’s already-thriving tech sector and developing innovations that could benefit communities and neighbourhoods elsewhere in the city. To help get started, Alphabet plans to move Google’s Canadian headquarters to the Eastern Waterfront.

To start a public conversation about the future of the Eastern Waterfront, Sidewalk Labs has released the vision laid out in its response to Waterfront Toronto’s RFP. The response represents early thinking about what neighbourhoods of the future could look like — ideas we hope will now be shaped by a public conversation that involves all Torontonians.

Community

Our commitment to meaningful public engagement, collaboration, and co-creation puts people at the centre of Sidewalk Toronto. Together we hope to build a new kind of city for all of us. Some of the values that inform our approach to engagement include:

We are excited to announce our public engagement plan, with a variety of events, activities, and opportunities designed to get Torontonians involved in the co-creation of Sidewalk Toronto. You can read the full plan here. There are many ways you can participate:

Come out to share with us your ideas, your concerns, your hopes. The neighbourhood of the future begins with all of us.

Coming in April, May, and Beyond!
Past Events
March 20, 2018 Public Roundtable Meeting #1 @ MTCC – North

We focused on the work plan to develop the Master Innovation and Development Plan. Click to watch the full event video.

March 27, 2018 Public Talk #1 @Harbourfront Centre – Fleck Dance Theatre

Our first public talk explored the future of complete streets. Click to watch the full event video.

November 1, 2017 Sidewalk Toronto Community Town Hall

Click to watch the full event video and read the initial feedback report.

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News and Social

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If you’re in Toronto, check out the newly launched @SidewalkToronto and learn how you can get involved. Create a city that’s built for you, by you. https://t.co/6jkozFs3yU

Marisa Morby

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