Cities around the world are looking for smart solutions to urban problems and are embracing technology to help them do so. At the same time, the gap between rich and poor in urban centres is growing – driving low income residents farther away from city centres. An upcoming conference held at the University of Toronto’s downtown campus is exploring how…Read More
article-context-nav context-nav article article-hero-lede article-hero article-contents post-contents On the Sidewalk Labs website is a 200-page document explaining its vision for a smart neighborhood in Toronto. It’s packed with illustrations that show a warm, idyllic community full of grassy parks, modular buildings and underground tunnels with delivery robots and internet cabling inside. The text describes “a truly complete community” that’s free…Read More
The nascent plans for a smart neighbourhood on Toronto’s eastern waterfront may sound exciting from an urban-planning perspective, but the high-tech project poses fundamental governance problems that we need to solve now.
Smart cities are largely an invention of the private sector – an effort to create a market within government. They offer tech companies opportunities to generate profits by assuming functions traditionally carried out by the public sector and by selling cities technologies they may or may not need. The business opportunities are clear. The risks inherent to residents, less so….Read More
The partnership between a U.S. urban-innovation lab and a government agency could bring a bold experiment in city-building and high-tech to Toronto, Alex Bozikovic explains More below • An illustrated primer on how Sidewalk Toronto would work An artist’s illustration shows Sidewalk Labs’s Quayside redevelopment of the Toronto waterfront. ILLUSTRATIONS COURTESY OF sidewalk labs Published October 17, 2017Updated November 12, 2017 A unit of…Read More
OP-ED in Reply To: “Reimagining cities from the internet up” by Daniel L. Doctoroff Dear Daniel L. Doctoroff, Bravo! Bravo! Bravo! I applaud and appreciate your efforts and the efforts of your team at Sidewalk Labs for demonstrating the importance of listening, learning, and putting all people first. Like yourself, I understand the urban public realm and am eager to see…Read More