Our first look at Alphabet’s smart city

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Alphabet’s Sidewalk Labs and Waterfront Toronto, an entity established by Canada, Ontario and the city of Toronto have shared a preview of the design outline for Sidewalk Toronto. The Sidewalk Toronto is a highly anticipated waterfront revitalization project that has been proclaimed to be “the world’s first neighbourhood built from the internet up.” The layout of Sidewalk Toronto includes a landscape of skyscraping timber structures positioned within a sphere filled with recreational amenities, housing, offices, commercial storefronts and various public space. A network of smart city route is conceptualized as a series of precast slab tiles, designed for resilience. The modular arrangement enables rapid maintenance and repair in addition to the allowance for seasonal changes. Further, real-world weather data analyses will help to regulate the optimization of indoor and outdoor spaces that is said to be modeled after the ancient Greek stoa, a public covered walkway used for markets and gatherings.

While the project commits to the delivery a high-tech utopia, some locals and critics have showed concern about the data privacy of residents. The infrastructure of any smart city landscape will have to tap onto the collection of data through sensors and surveillance tools, essential for the management and tracking of traffic flows and user behaviors; which have been highlighted as cybersecurity concerns for data storage and privacy.

Source: Fast Company

Participate in the upcoming QS in conversation – “University-Public Sector Partnerships: Smart Cities” which will be held from 3-5 October 2018 in Singapore.