Heatherwick Studios and Snøhetta have revealed plans for a technology-led, all-timber development on Toronto’s waterfront for Google’s parent company Alphabet
The proposed scheme, overlooking Lake Ontario, has been drawn up for Alphabet’s urban innovation arm Sidewalk Labs. It features around 3,000 homes, space for nearly 4,000 workers and will be built ‘entirely of tall timber’.
The development of the 9.5ha site will also include ‘next generation infrastructure systems’ such as ‘digital electricity, a thermal grid and an underground waste system run by robots’. Although only at concept stage, the new district is expected to be built from modular components.
According to Sidewalk Labs, the project will also boast ’flexible infrastructure [which] will make physical space as low risk and dynamic as digital space’ with micro lease terms and ’business in a box services’.
This new neighbourhood, dubbed Quayside, is the first phase of a wider redevelopment of the Canadian city’s eastern waterfront which is being hailed as a new smart city of the future.
These initial stage plans at Parliament Slip include significant space for Google as part of a larger campus in and around the nearby Villiers Island (pictured bottom right on drawing below).
Thomas Heatherwick’s practice is already working with Google at King’s Cross in London and in California.
Quayside, credit ôçô sidewalk labs