Civil liberties advocates threaten lawsuit over plans for high-tech waterfront neighbourhood

The Canadian Civil Liberties Association is threatening litigation related to Sidewalk Labs and Waterfront Toronto's plans to build a high-tech neighbourhood on Toronto's waterfront.

In a letter to the prime minister, the premier of Ontario and the mayor of Toronto, the association says the Quayside project should be ``reset'' and privacy protections should be legislated before Waterfront Toronto moves forward with any partner.

The letter says if the process is not reset through government or by elected assembly, the civil society dedicated to defending Canadian rights and freedoms may need to resort to the courts.

The CCLA says the project poses constitutional problems because it has outsourced the public interest to a private company without democratic or legal authorities and it worries the project has opened the door to a ``non-consensual, state-authorized mass capture of Canadians' personal information.''

The project has long been raising data and privacy concerns due to the vast amounts of information it could collect through phones, sensors and other devices it plans to use in the neighbourhood.<