Waterfront Toronto’s Note to Reader

Click to download the Note to Reader

Click to download the Note to Reader

Over the next several months, Waterfront Toronto will be reviewing and evaluating the MIDP from Sidewalk Labs. To support the process of seeking public feedback on the MIDP, Waterfront Toronto has written a Note to Reader. It is based on an initial, high level review of the MIDP and includes reference to (and summaries of) many of Sidewalk Labs proposals. The Note to Reader is not a substitute for the MIDP.


The Waterfront Toronto Note to Reader provides a synthesis of:

  • What Waterfront Toronto asked from its Innovation and Funding Partner;

  • The response from Sidewalk Labs;

  • Where and how the Draft MIDP aligns with existing practices and what’s new;

  • Where the privatization of public assets is being proposed (if at all); and

  • Financial impacts and risks.

It is available at www.QuaysideTO.ca and a hard copy is available at all of the following Toronto Public Library locations:

  • North York Central Library

  • Scarborough Civic Centre Branch

  • Toronto Reference Library

  • Fort York Public Library

  • Brentwood Library

  • Queen/Saulter Branch

  • St. Lawrence Branch

Early Thoughts and Questions to Consider

Based on Waterfront Toronto’s initial review of the MIDP, there are a number of exciting ideas that respond to challenges Toronto faces, particularly related to environmental sustainability and economic development. There are also proposals where it is clear that Waterfront Toronto and Sidewalk Labs have different perspectives about what is required for success. Early examples Waterfront Toronto’s priority considerations are:

  • The up-front creation of an IDEA District that covers a much larger area than the 12 acres of Quayside

  • Sidewalk Labs proposes to lead development on Quayside, with the support of local partners. Should the MIDP go forward, it should be on the basis that Waterfront Toronto lead a competitive, public procurement process for developer(s) to partner with Waterfront Toronto and Sidewalk Labs (as our Innovation and Funding Partner)

  • Sidewalk Labs’ proposals require future commitments by our governments to realize project outcomes. These proposals raise significant implementation concerns and are also not commitments that Waterfront Toronto can make

  • The need for more information to determine whether the initial proposals relating to data collection, data use, and digital governance are in compliance with applicable laws and respect Waterfront Toronto’s digital governance principles

The Note to Reader reflects these priority considerations, and also poses both general and specific questions for the public to consider regarding the MIDP, such as: What proposals in the MIDP from Sidewalk Labs do you like? Which proposals raise questions or concerns for you, and why? What do you see as the risks with Sidewalk Labs’ proposals? Under what conditions, if any, would you want to see Waterfront Toronto pursue these proposals further?