Google’s next moonshot project will hit close to home for millions. That’s because the search giant has created a new company tasked with improving urban life through a variety of different means.
Announced in a Google+ post by Google chief Larry Page, Sidewalk Labs will focus on improving city life by developing urban technologies to address matters like cost of living, efficient transportation and energy usage.
Page acknowledged that this is very different from Google’s core business but it’s an area where he hopes they can improve people’s lives, similar to what they’re doing with Google[x] and Calico, the company’s secret lab and its business that focuses on extending life expectancy, respectively. He added that making long-term bets like this is hard for most companies to do but he and co-founder Sergey Brin believe it is important.
The effort is being led by Daniel L. Doctoroff who formerly served as the CEO of Bloomberg as well as the Deputy Mayor of Economic Development and Rebuilding in New York City.
In a statement on the matter, Doctoroff said we are at the beginning of a historic transformation in cities in which unprecedented technological change is going to enable cities to be more efficient, responsive, flexible and resilient. He added that he hopes Sidewalk will play a major role in developing technology products, platforms and advanced infrastructure that can be implemented at scale in cities around the world.
No word yet on which products or projects the newly minted company plans to tackle first.