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Waterfront Toronto chair, 2 directors fired following Sidewalk Labs deal

ROB GILLIES, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | posted Friday, Dec 7th, 2018

The chairwoman of a government organization that signed an agreement with a Google affiliated company to create a smart-city development in Toronto says she and two other appointed board members have been fired.

A unit of Google’s parent company Alphabet is proposing to turn a rundown part of Toronto’s waterfront into what may be the most wired community in history.

Sidewalk Labs had partnered with a government agency known as Waterfront Toronto with plans to erect mid-rise buildings on a 12-acre (4.9-hectare) site.

Waterfront chair Helen Burstyn confirmed Thursday the firing of herself and board members Michael Nobrega and Meric Gertler.

A recent auditor general report highlighted numerous examples of waste and inefficiency at Waterfront Toronto, saying it had failed to deliver on its mandate to revitalize Toronto’s waterfront. Auditor Bonnie Lysyk said Waterfront Toronto did not properly consult with any levels of government regarding the Sidewalk Labs project.

Some Canadians are rethinking the privacy implications and want the public to get a cut of the revenue from products developed.

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