Sidewalk labs faces new set of questions over Toronto smart city proposal

The proposed plan is awaiting approvals from the city of Toronto

After resubmitting its revised proposal in November, Alphabet-owned Sidewalk Labs is still facing questions about its smart city plan.

The Google sister company has been working with Waterfront Toronto on the project for two years now.

The government-appointed panel in charge of going over the proposal has new questions about the project’s data-gathering technology. The panel has outlined that it requires clarity on several aspects of the proposal.

Michael Geist, the chair of Waterfront Toronto’s Digital Strategy Advisory Panel wrote in a blog post that the panel wants “an explanation of why digital approaches to solutions were chosen over non-digital ones.”

The board is also concerned about how the effectiveness of proposed systems and initiatives will be measured and “how any potential negative impacts against marginalized or vulnerable groups will be identified and addressed.”

Sidewalk Labs told Reuters that the technology in the proposal is going to be in line with what is already used in Toronto. The company also says that the proposal does not include a surveillance system or any sort of facial recognition.

Waterfront Toronto is scheduled to make its final decision regarding the proposal in May.

Source: Reuters