Since Google, i.e. the parent company Alphabet announced in 2017 the construction of a fully digitized settlement in Toronto that should solve the urban problems of overpopulation, pollution, traffic congestion and waste disposal, some skeptical residents of Toronto warn that the tech giant is trying to make its version of Truman's show, a social experiment. Enthusiasts, on the other hand, are delighted by the announced innovations on which the city will function.
Among other things, the "dynamic" streets of Google's name City of Sidewalk Toronto will be built of special hexagonal wood panels that would heat up winter and snow or snow, thus avoiding the risk of people slip. Built-in street LEDs would change color, suggesting the purpose of the road for that day. For example, in the days of intensified traffic it would be a road for cars, while others for pedestrians and cyclists. Above the street would have set the so-called. raincoats for weather conditions, transparent plastic tents made of a special material whose climate technology allows residents to protect from adverse weather, ie heat during cold winter and freshness during hot summer.
Sidewalk Labs, a subsidiary of Alphabet, is responsible for the realization of the science-fiction city of the future, and as they say in its extensive program of nearly 200 pages, they "lift it up from the Internet up". The town, better known as the quarter in Toronto, the name Quayside will be stretched in the first phase to 50 thousand square meters along the shores of Lake Ontario. It will be an investment of at least one billion dollars, and it should also open four thousand new jobs. At the last stage, dozens of residential buildings are planned on 20 floors, covered by a unique 5G network. Below the city, by the network of tunnels, "trucks" would be used for garbage collection and delivery, and the entire infrastructure would be supplied solely by geothermal and solar energy. But in order for all of this to work, the people of the card must be under constant control.
Power and influence
"They come to cities where they use power and influence on city policy making for which the government should be in charge," says Bianca Wylie, co-founder of Tech Reset Canada, IT consulting firm, and voice supporter of Sidewalk Labs, arguing that the Canadian authorities put local services on in the hands of a private corporation. Also, Julie DiLorenzo, owner of Real Estate Agents in Toronto, says Sidewalk Labs flew in with great plans, but citizens still have no answers to questions about how the entire project will be financed and whether people can choose to be omitted from city data collection.
On the other hand, according to the latest poll from February, 55 percent of Toronto's citizens support the city's future project.