Is Sidewalk’s departure the end of the road? 10 lessons for communities building their own smart and inclusive cities

What role should technology play?

Why It Matters

Sidewalk Labs’ dream was to build a next-generation, high-tech neighbourhood in Toronto as a showcase for what cities of the future could look like. It was one of the highest-profile and most anticipated projects of its kind, anywhere in the world. Their successes, failures, and decision to walk away has lessons for communities across Canada.

In early May, Google’s NYC-based sister company Sidewalk Labs announced its decision to not proceed with Quayside, a smart technology-enabled neighbourhood on Toronto’s redeveloping waterfront. Sidewalk had been working with the government agency Waterfront Toronto for the past two and a half years in what was one of the highest-profile and most anticipated smart city developments in the world, culminating in a 1,500 page


For limited access, create a FREE account

Limited Time Offer

Unlimited Access

Only $24 for the year 

80% off the standard annual membership ($119.50)

Enjoy unlimited access to insightful social impact journalism, special reports, talks and events that fuel your learning, development and decision-making.

For group membership discounts, contact us.

Already have an account? Log in

These special introductory offer is not available to current subscribers of the same subscription type. Your payment method will automatically be charged in advance the introductory rate indicated in the offer above for 1 year, and after 1 year the indicated standard. Your subscription will continue until you cancel. Cancellation takes effect at the end of your current billing period. HST taxes apply. Offer terms are subject to change