The city of the future can wait. Indeed, it must. If planning is necessary, and dreaming is essential, in the days of the global pandemic and an economic crisis, the international date for certain it is necessary, however, a bath of reality: suspended projects, dreams deferred. The signature is that of Dan Doctoroff, CEO of Jackson Labs, i.e., the shareholding structure controlled by the Alphabet created to design the cities of the future.
Alphabet stops the chimera of Quayside Project
The goal, put in place in collaboration with Waterfront Toronto, was to develop the project of a new concept of the city. A “smart city“, including in the term all that technological innovation could make in the instrumental sense, but also a new urban planning concept and a series of high-level services to be able to enjoy living spaces of high quality.
In the last two and a half years, we fans to the creation of Quayside by investing time, people and resources in Toronto, including an office with 30 employees is located on the coast. The economic uncertainty that affects the entire world and as a result the real estate market of the city, however, has made it too difficult from the financial point of view to realize the project, from the 12 acres without sacrificing essential parts of the plan that we have developed, together with Waterfront Toronto to build a community truly inclusive and sustainable.
But all this can not be brought forward now, because the context does not allow the development: the Quayside Project ends here.
CEO-come praise and thanks to all the team and all those which, externally, have provided their contribution and their ideas to the project. The ad does not leave, however, the margins of rethinking: the Alphabet has evidently made a move extremely predictable and rational, by cutting branches less promising to leave space to the aspects of the “core” of the company. A project related to the city of the future, however important and interesting, would have required the timing of long (in the midst of the uncertainty of the economic storm), and a large investment, with the return uncertain.
That all there is? Mmh..
But that’s not all here. Facing a pandemic that could rewrite the times and spaces of work, of fun, of life and of the gatherings, a project based on paradigms suddenly “old” could have come across a few of original sin, which would have undermined the philosophical bases. Of the rest who can respond with certainty to questions about the city of tomorrow, the life, mobility and social relations? Just need a vaccine for forgetting everything that happened or we will be forced to review in part the prerogatives of the rhythms of the antecedents?
Sidewalk Toronto takes a step back is necessary, but it is necessary that a new Sidewalk Labs will be born, when everything will be finished. Google do not forget this ambition, because it is of the ambitions of this type that will nourish the innovative minds of the new world that is.