(Simcoe County, ON) December 16, 2022 – Today SWIFT announced construction of a high-speed fibre-optic network has begun in Simcoe County to bring improved internet service to 470 homes and businesses.
“SWIFT is pleased to partner with Cogeco in our efforts to expand broadband service throughout Simcoe County’s underserved areas. With construction now well underway in the project area many residents and business owners in the community of Severn Bridge will soon have access to a reliable high-quality internet connection,” said Barry Field, Executive Director, SWIFT. “Today’s announcement is yet another major milestone for the SWIFT program as it brings our region one step closer to a more connected Southwestern Ontario.”
As part of SWIFT’s Southwestern Ontario broadband expansion plan, Cogeco was awarded funding to increase access to high-speed internet service within the Township of Severn. Construction of the 19-kilometre fibre-to-the-home network began earlier this year and once complete will bring improved connectivity to underserved areas south of the Severn River and north of Washago within the community of Severn Bridge.
“Our government continues to deliver on our commitment to expand access to high-speed internet to communities across the province,” said Lisa Thompson, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “By building new broadband infrastructure in Simcoe County, we are helping to build Ontario and strengthen rural communities. This investment is helping people stay in touch with loved ones, enabling them to access the supports they need while providing a much-needed boost to the local economy.”
“High speed internet access is essential for all Canadians, no matter where they live,” said Tony Van Bynen, Member of Parliament for Newmarket—Aurora, on behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities. “Teleworking, long-distance learning, and many essential services increasingly require reliable broadband. Starting construction on a new network for the community of Severn Bridge also builds on the Government of Canada’s commitment to have all Canadians connected to highspeed internet by 2030.”
“Access to high-speed internet connectivity is essential for our rural and urban communities, businesses and residents, it’s as vital as offering broader telephone access 50 years ago,” said County of Simcoe Warden Basil Clarke. “It’s good to see this continued progress on SWIFT, and we remain grateful to the Federal and Provincial Governments for their investment into this critical infrastructure.”
Today’s announcement is part of SWIFT’s $270 million regional broadband expansion plan that will bring high-speed internet access to nearly 64,000 homes and businesses throughout Southwestern Ontario.
For additional information on SWIFT funded projects, please visit: www.swiftruralbroadband.ca/projects.
“We’re all about connecting and supporting our communities. Thanks to our partnership with SWIFT, 477 residents and businesses in Severn Bridge will soon enjoy our powerful network and local programming on YourTV. Investments like this are crucial to driving economic growth in communities across Ontario.”
– Matt Wickham, Vice President and General Manager, Customer Experience and B2B, Cogeco.
- SWIFT, in partnership with the federal and provincial governments and private sector investors, has committed a combined investment of $40.5 million to bring high-speed internet service to more than 12,7000 underserved homes and businesses in Simcoe County.
- In total, SWIFT has awarded 97 contracts to support the expansion of broadband infrastructure throughout Southwestern Ontario to bring nearly 64,000 homes and businesses across the region access to high-speed internet service. Local projects are underway, with 41 projects in the construction phase and 55 projects completed.
Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) is a non-profit regional broadband project initiated by the Western Ontario Wardens’ Caucus to subsidize the construction of high-speed broadband networks across Southwestern Ontario, Caledon and the Niagara Region.
The project was approved for funding up to $127.4 million under the New Building Canada Fund – Small Communities Fund (NBCF-SCF), a joint federal and provincial infrastructure funding program, and leverages additional funding from municipal partners and private sector investors to bring improve access to broadband services across the region.
Manager, Communications and Stakeholder Relations
Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology