Last week, Associate Professor and Director of the Centre for Landscape Research Robert Wright was part of a panel discussion that highlighted U of T’s expertise and different perspectives on smart cities. The panelists brought research from a workshop in India, and also weighed in on Sidewalk Lab’s recent announcement to create a new, technologically connected neighbourhood for Toronto’s waterfront. Moderated by Janice Stein, Wright was joined by U of T experts Judy Farvolden, V. Kumar Murty, Patricia O’Campo, Enid Slack, and David Wolfe.
“Panelists agreed that smart cities cannot take a one-size-fits-all approach – all cities and towns are built differently with different wants and needs,” wrote Romi Levine for U of T News.
The event comes after a workshop in India led by U of T earlier this year at the Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay Centre Centre for Urban Science and Engineering (IIT-B) on the future of smart cities. Presenters from U of T and IIT-B approached the definition of smart cities from a broad perspective, considering physical and social infrastructural needs as well as the role of management and services required for the sustainable operation, inclusive development, and growth of metropolitan areas. Presentations connected leading-edge research and knowledge together with strategies and recommendations for approaching India’s next decade of smart cities development.
Photo, top: Modal Cities Theatre and Lab at One Spadina. Rendering by NADAAA. The Model Cities Theatre and Lab will draw on comparative data and insights from the Global Cities Indicators Facility for use in conjunction with emerging 3D and other visualization techniques in order to test and project new ideas in urban design. The theatre and lab will facilitate research on designing cities holistically, and offer a public forum for creating new decision frameworks, design options, policy alternatives, and industry solutions.