January 7, 2020

Municipal planning just got reeeeeeal techy

Toyota announced plans to build an experimental smart city at the base of Mount Fuji, mirroring Google’s plans to build a similar city in Toronto.

During a press conference at CES 2020 (where else?), Toyota announced plans to build a tech-topia at the base of Mount Fuji. 

Woven City will be a “living laboratory” for Toyota and other companies — it’s open to partnerships — to test innovations.

Will I get my own Rosie?

Actually, yes. Homes will come with robots that handle basic household tasks. Other Woven City highlights include:

  • Embedded sensors to connect buildings, vehicles, and people
  • Only autonomous, zero-emission cars and trucks permitted on primary thoroughfares 
  • Homes built with sustainable materials and powered by a mix of solar energy and hydrogen fuel cells 

Toyota plans to break ground in 2021 and expects about 2k residents — mostly Toyota employees and their families. 

And if you want in, but don’t want to move to Japan…

You’re in luck. Google subsidiary Sidewalk Labs plans to build a smart city in an underused area of Toronto. Some vital deets:

  • Plans include a mix of high-tech residential, retail, and office spaces designed to solve issues like waste disposal and traffic congestion
  • Collected data will become a public asset
  • Development would be overseen by a governmental group called Waterfront Toronto

It’s worth noting that, historically, company towns have been problematic.

During the Industrial Revolution, coal companies established communities that basically ensured they owned everyone’s a**. It might be true that every cloud has a silver lining, but there might be something else lurking behind THE cloud.

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