Like many cities around the world, Toronto faces both opportunities and challenges associated with its population growth. More people in the city contribute to the vibrant mix of skills, cultures, creativity and economic opportunity Toronto enjoys. But we face important challenges too—around climate change, economic inequality, affordability and mobility.Since Waterfront Toronto was created in 2001, we’ve delivered more than four dozen capital projects on the lands along the lake—transforming almost 100 hectares of underutilized space into active urban places.Our projects are diverse yet they are all powered by the same things: our expertise in city-building, our focus on innovation and job creation and our unwavering commitment to the public good.
Looking at Quayside we saw an opportunity to advance our ambitious sustainability and innovation mandates and to create a community that could transform how we approach urban development. Throughout 2016, we engaged in deep research, aided by our consultants including KPMG and ARUP Canada, to test our thinking and better understand the current state of mind in the marketplace. This research included market sounding interviews with more than 50 companies and institutions. You can read more about our research in this blog.
Quayside provides an opportunity to pilot new solutions for addressing common urban challenges both at Quayside and in other parts of the city. In March 2017, Waterfront Toronto launched an international Request for Proposal seeking an Innovation and Funding Partner for the Quayside Development Opportunity.
There were four main objectives in the RFP:
1. Sustainability, Resiliency and Urban Innovation
Creating a globally significant demonstration project for climate-positive urban development.
2. Complete Communities
Establishing a complete community that emphasizes quality of place, and provides a range of housing types for families of all sizes and income levels within a robust mix of uses, including public open space, culture, recreation, vibrant retail, education-related activities and offices.
3. Economic Development and Prosperity
Providing a testbed for Canada’s cleantech, building materials and broader innovation sectors to support their growth and competitiveness in global markets.
4. Partnership and Investment
Developing a new partnership model that ensures a solid financial foundation, manages financial risk and secures revenue that funds future phases of waterfront revitalization.