It was a big week in Toronto for tech news, with Elevate kicking off its second annual, city-wide tech fest on Tuesday and the announcement of two new tech hubs from MaRS Discovery District and Instacart.
Yung Wu, CEO of MaRS made the announcement on the Elevate main stage that its newest tech hub will occupy a 24,000 square-foot space along Toronto’s waterfront as part of the Toronto Waterfront Innovation Centre.
The space, developed in partnership with the University of Toronto, will be located in the to-be-created HIVE tower stated the press release and will provide a collaborative work-space for scaling startups. The Waterfront Innovation Centre, situated near Sugar Beach and Sidewalk Labs’ Quayside location, is set to open in 2021 and is estimated to accommodate 3,000 workers.
“As Toronto becomes a destination for global talent, venture capital and tech corporations, demand for space is at an all-time high. It’s imperative that we develop new innovative and entrepreneurial hubs in communities across the city,” said Wu in the release. He claims the innovation centre will “further solidify Toronto’s standing as a premier tech centre.”
On the same day, Instacart, the San Francisco-based grocery delivery service announced its own tech hub, calling it a significant expansion of its presence in Canada.
The hub, to be named “Instacart North”, will create 200 new jobs in Toronto over the next several years in engineering, product, design and research and development. The company has been growing its connection with the city over the past year with the acquisition of Toronto-based Unata which was announced in Janruary.
Instacart CEO and University of Waterloo alumni Aproova Mehta stated in the release that “the perception was that you had to leave Toronto and head to Silicon Valley to make an impact in tech. Today’s that no longer the case, as Toronto has quickly become one of the hottest tech markets in the world.”