Public Realm

We have provided some information below about what is in the MIDP to help inform your feedback. The survey questions follow at the bottom of this page. Once you have filled in your answers, please click “Submit." You can then either click “Next Section” to continue taking the survey or click “Done” to finish.

Waterfront Toronto asked for:

  • New methods and strategies for enhancing the public realm

  • Potential benefits technology could bring to augment public spaces and improve the quality of life

Sidewalk Labs proposed:

  • A system of open spaces coupled with digital tools, including a platform enabling people to reserve public areas

  • To provide a flexible interior space on the ground floor of buildings, called “Stoa". Its leasing and operations would be managed through a digital tool called Seed Space

  • To map underground infrastructure in 3D to help with maintenance and repairs

  • A heated, green, and lighted paving system that could melt snow, is permeable, and has LED lighting to provide wayfinding

  • Adaptable and curb less streets which include a dynamic curb that adjusts the pick-up/drop-off zone to enable pedestrian use based on demand

  • Outdoor comfort system to increase usability of public realm in shoulder seasons

Other elements of Sidewalk Labs’ proposals:

  • Sidewalk Labs proposes establishing a new, independent, not-for-profit organization called the Open Space Alliance (OSA) to assume responsibility for operations and maintenance of all public realm

  • The proposal for an OSA sees funding coming from the City of Toronto for park operations, maintenance, fees from ground floor tenants, sponsorship revenues, and concessions from events. The OSA’s proposed roles and responsibilities would replace certain roles of the City of Toronto, including operations and maintenance

Rendering by Sidewalk Labs

Rendering by Sidewalk Labs

Waterfront Toronto's Note to Reader Review:

  • Sidewalk Labs proposes technology-based tools and space management concepts that would extend beyond typical practices on Toronto’s waterfront

  • The Sidewalk Labs proposal follows Waterfront Toronto’s current approach to designing and constructing streets that connect neighbourhoods and destinations along the waterfront, create pedestrian and cycling-friendly trails, and encourage activation to create vibrant neighbourhoods. The scale and proposed approach to realizing these outcomes, however, deviates from approved plans. For example, Waterfront Toronto asked for urban and building design to account for different seasons such as all-weather colonnades; Sidewalk Labs has proposed strategies such as awning-style ‘raincoats’ attached to buildings and structures to block wind and cover open spaces

Waterfront Toronto’s early thinking on risks to consider:

  • Technical viability, approvability, effectiveness, and desirability of outdoor comfort proposals

  • Complexity of establishing the OSA and bridging funding gap

  • Compliance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act

  • Attractiveness of semi-conditioned Stoa spaces in winter

  • Privacy and data governance concerns with the collection of data in public spaces

Waterfront Toronto’s questions for you about Public Realm

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How receptive are you to exploring this proposal from Sidewalk Labs?

Interested in taking a deeper dive into additional questions about Sidewalk Labs’ proposals for Public Realm? Fill out the survey form below to provide your feedback.


additional questions about Public Realm

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