Google’s sister firm Sidewalk Labs has abandoned a plan to build a smart city in Canada, citing complications caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. This is a major jolt to the already struggling Toronto Real Estate market. This was an ambitious project both for Google and Ontario Government which was marred with several controversies and Sidewalk Labs had already been forced to scale back its ambitions.
Chief executive Dan Doctoroff blamed “unprecedented economic uncertainty” for abandoning the plan.
In a blog post, Mr Doctoroff said: “As unprecedented economic uncertainty has set in around the world, and in the Toronto real estate market, it has become too difficult to make the 12-acre project financially viable without sacrificing core parts of the plan we had developed together with Waterfront Toronto to build a truly inclusive, sustainable community.
With great sadness and disappointment we announce that @sidewalklabs will no longer pursue the Quayside project in Toronto. We’re grateful to @WaterfrontTO and all Torontonians who contributed to this effort these past 2.5 years. CEO @DanDoctoroff has more https://t.co/VrNI4cSCzM
— Sidewalk Toronto (@SidewalkToronto) May 7, 2020
Sidewalk Labs came to Toronto in 2017, responding to a request for proposals by government agency Waterfront Toronto, looking for a project to revitalize a section of the city’s eastern lakeshore. The project was supposed to provide more than 44,000 full-time, permanent jobs (and 93,000 total jobs). It was projected to add roughly $14.2 billion in annual GDP output beginning in 2040. The Govt was expected to collect an estimated $4.3 billion in annual tax revenue (federal, provincial, and municipal) by 2040. The Project is not shelved bringing sad news for Technology and Real estate world.