The controversial high-tech Quayside Project is going to the next stage.
As predicted, Waterfront Toronto and Sidewalk Labs agreed to a deal on the development of the eastern waterfront site.
Waterfront Toronto’s board has officially approved substantial “realignments” to the ambitious plan preferred by Sidewalk Labs, part of the Google family, this past June.
Under the new agreement, Waterfront Toronto has asserted control over the project.
In the June proposal, Sidewalk wanted to develop a much larger site (called the IDEA District concept) which would have seen the project have a much bigger footprint in the Port Lands. Now, the project will be limited to the 12-acre site near Parliament and Queens Quay East.
If the master plan goes ahead, Waterfront Toronto will be in control of a public process to find a developer to partner with Sidewalk. In Sidewalk’s proposal, it had positioned itself as the lead developer on the mixed used Quayside project.
The traditional municipal infrastructure (parks, sewers, etc.) will be led and implemented by Waterfront Toronto, not Sidewalk Labs.
The issue of a new Light Rail Transit line to service the proposed high-tech district (presumably home to thousands of new residents and workers) will be dealt with by other jurisdictions (ie. city council) because Waterfront Toronto does not have the authority to approve funding for public transit.