Alphabet’s smart city subsidiary, Sidewalk Labs, launched its huge plan this week to convert a slice of Toronto’s waterfront into a high-tech dream world. Clocking in at 1,524 pages and 18 Months in the making, the plan shows Alphabet’s high-stakes, first effort to understand Larry Page’s (Alphabet CEO) long-held vision of a city inside a city to test innovations such as new health care delivery solutions, public Wi-Fi, self-driving cars, and other city planning enhancements that modern tech makes feasible.
Earlier, Sidewalk Labs dubbed it as “a neighborhood developed from the web.” But this week, Dan Doctoroff (Sidewalk Labs CEO) went a step forward to define it as “the most innovative region in the globe.”
Sidewalk Toronto’s initial pitch was to develop a high-tech society on an almost empty 12-acre space of Quayside (an industrial waterfront site). The plan comprises:
- A plan to expand the light-rail system of the city to serve the new region
- 10 new buildings of mixed-employment development comprising majorly of a number of new residential divisions, as well as office & retail spaces, all created from mass timber
- Setup public Wi-Fi, apart from other sensors to gather “urban info” to better tell traffic an housing decisions, for instance
- Renovating roads to lower car employment and promote walking and biking
- Developing the new Canadian office for Google on the Villiers Island’s western edge
- Plan to lower greenhouse gases by almost 89%
On a related note, Waymo signed an agreement with Renault and Nissan to bring its driverless trucks and cars to Japan and France, the firms declared this week.
The wording of the agreement is indistinct and does not hint any solid plans to roll out either delivery services or robot taxi, as Waymo has done earlier with its other automotive associates. Rather, the 3 firms will just “explore driverless mobility platforms for deliveries and passengers.”